Completed Hunting in the Rain

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Built into the cliffs overlooking the Suvan Sea, Riverfall resides on the edge of grasslands of Cyphrus where the Bluevein River plunges off the plain and cascades down to the inland sea below. Home of the Akalak, Riverfall is a self-supporting city populated by devoted warriors. [Riverfall Codex]

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Hunting in the Rain

Postby Merevaika on May 30th, 2015, 3:15 pm

67th Spring 515

The weather had changed dramatically. From sun and clear skies, to this. The heavens had opened, and rain was gushing through, a thick, heavy, ongoing downpour that hadn't stopped for days. The Bluevien had flooded its banks, the river faster and murkier at the top of the waterfall, although it remained crystal clear on its journey down towards the sea.

Merevaika was soaking wet, shivering and cold. She coughed, unable to see very well, or at all, in through the rain. It had been stupid, she knew that, to venture outside to try to hunt. First, there were no animals, non foolish enough to go out in this rain anyway. Even the deers, which Merevaika saw out in almost all other weathers, had decided that day was just too wet and soggy for them.

Unfortunately, Merevaika had nothing else to do but ride around in search for food, hungry, tired and coming down with a bad cough.

The noise of the rain covered her constant coughing, the only good thing, but it covered tracks and trails as well, making any sort of tracking impossible. And then there was the question of ordinary sight, the rain obscuring everything around until only the closest things were visible, but even they were just outlines and silhouettes.

Eryunt had turned away from the wind and rain, head down and ears slightly pricked up. He walked slowly, as if the movements were hard and tiring, and Merevaika didn't doubt that they were. The ground was wet and slippery, Eryunt ankle deep in mud, and occasionally a hoof gave way, the horse catching himself quickly. Merevaika felt bad for bringing him out into this weather. He deserved to be inside, nice and warm and not in this weather, trying to reach a pointless goal.

But Merevaika was determined to return home with something.

And it was destined to be a small, limping bird, caught out in heavy winds and rain and unable to fly.

The huntress was lucky to have seen it. After all, the bird was the same murky brown colour as the mud around them, blending into its environment perfectly. It was more chance that she had found it, hearing a small screech as the horse had almost stepped on it. Straining her eyes, Merevaika made it out, trying to flap away and failing miserably. The wind had just picked up even more.

The bird turned to look at them, knowing that an attempt to flee would be pointless. It was slow when it hopped along the ground, definitely not fast enough to outrun a horse and girl. Its element was lost to it, the bird unable to pick up and take to its home. And so it was left stranded and alone, its fate clear. Merevaika thanked the gods for bringing it to her.
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Hunting in the Rain

Postby Merevaika on June 19th, 2015, 10:12 pm

She fumbled with an arrow, the wet wood slipping out of her fingers. One splashed onto the ground, mud splattering up and hitting her boots. She sighed, before swinging down the retrieve it. It was a move she had seen another hunter do, holding on tightly with one hand while swinging her body around the horse, moving to a position where she would sit if she was riding the horse sideways. However, Merevaika was inexperienced, and failed at it, landing in the mud with a sickening splat. She pulled herself up, glad that at least she had the arrow now. Of course, the fact that her shirt and trousers were now covered in mud didn't help, but at least she had the arrow.

No, optimism was fruitless. It would get her nowhere.

She stayed off the horse, deciding to try hit the bird from the ground. It flapped away a little further, trying its chances with the wind but still unable to take to the skies. It gave a desperate squawk, before hopping around in circles, clueless at what to do next. Merevaika pulled her bow back, the arrow, covered in mud, now in place. Trying to get her timing right, she released, the noise of the arrow hidden under the sound of rainfall. The bird didn't notice the arrow until it landed by its feet, giving it a shock.

It made another noise, jumping away with hurried wing beats before landing a few feet away from where it had started. Merevaika tried again, this time landing further from her target. She sighed, annoyed, before readying her bow once more, this time confident with her shot. She would hit the bird, and the bird would be hers. Of course, fate had already gone her way once that day. It wasn't going to do as she wished another time.

The third arrow landed out further still. Merevaika hurried to retrieve the lost arrows, keeping a good eye on the bird, who was slowly hopping away. She would have to try again, at least one more time.

She continued this process, knowing that it would only be a matter of time until the bird was shot and she came out victorious. Arrow after arrow was pulled back, her arm steadying with slow and timed breaths, focusing her energy in the bow string and with pulling it back, before adjusting her aim and releasing the arrow, then repeating the process. Every several arrows, she retrieved the scattered ones, not wanting to lose them.

The bird slowly made its way to what she believed was the Bluvien river, although she was unsure. The rain did not only make riding and hunting much harder - it made navigation and orientation much harder too.

At realising its mistake, the bird decided to try hide in a patch of tall long grass, thinking that Merevaika wouldn't spot it. However, the huntress did, watching it enter through the corner of her eye. The bird's hiding place was good, but no good enough.
Last edited by Merevaika on June 19th, 2015, 10:17 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Hunting in the Rain

Postby Merevaika on June 19th, 2015, 10:13 pm

Merevaika took another shot, the arrow flying straight into the tufts of grass. With a startled cry, the bird started to exit, but Merevaika was already ready with another arrow, and, by some fluke, managed to hit it on its way out, pinning it to the ground successfully. She hurried over to her prize, breaking its neck for certainty before stringing it up on the side of Eryunt, who had been slowly following her on her rather slow and dull chase.

The horse sniffled, and Merevaika coughed. The rain was doing neither good, but at least now they could return home, with something to bring with them. Merevaika would sell it, and use the money to buy some cheaper food, pocketing the change. She would prefer to not feast now it it meant she wouldn't go hungry later.

Something caught her eye, that second, a figure or shape just a little further. It seemed to be an animal, trapped on a small island surrounded by the overflowing river. A perfect kill, just waiting to happen. Merevaika mounted Eryunt, checking that the bird was tightly in place. She assured him of her good intentions, slowly patting his back, before leading him forward towards the raging currents. Eryunt backed away at the last moment, telling Merevaika that he wasn't confident with wading the deep surging rivers.

Merevaika was angry. She had given him an order, and he had refused her judgement, not understanding what this extra kill meant for her. She was hungry and desperate, and at that moment the idea was perfect. She would ride her horse to the island, deal with the beast, and return with it. For the first time in her life, Merevaika forgot that he was Eryunt, her strider, and saw him as a slave to her, forced to do her every command. Anger in her, she turned Eryunt back, kicking him hard and forcefully. Eryunt reluctantly abided with her requests, but the fear and uncertainty was clear if Merevaika had only thought to read his body language.

She forced him onward, down into the surging water up to his belly, then further, until the bank was invisible from where they were standing, hidden by rain. She drove him further still, and Eryunt complied, each move reluctant but not defiant. Then disaster struck.

A wave, a huge wall of murky water crashed towards them, unnoticed by the goal set drykas. It hit her hard, forcing her off her horse, who bravely stood his ground and fought against its strength.

Merevaika felt arms pulling her down and around, pushing her and shoving her, spinning her and twisting her. Bubbles of her breath floated around her, the only things visible in the water in which she was trapped. She tried to swim, but she couldn't, the force of the wave too strong. It wasn't as if she had any knowledge on swimming anyway. She kicked and batted with her arms, trying to bring herself up but she no longer felt which way was up. Every direction looked and felt the same, and Merevaika fought against the current with desperation but no result.

She felt her lungs go weak, desperate for air. But there was none, just water, water everywhere. Natural instincts kicked in, and she opened her mouth to breath, but instead got a mouthful of water and dirt. She tried to cough, but she couldn't. She tried to swim but she couldn't.

The only thing she could do was let go.

And, as the world slowly faded into black, she felt the firm grip on the back of her shirt, pulling.
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Hunting in the Rain

Postby Merevaika on June 19th, 2015, 10:16 pm

Awakening was unsettling and unexpected. But it was a wonderful feeling, after she had skipped the step of coughing, water spluttering out her mouth and lungs and oxygen taking its rightful place. She was lain on the ground surrounded by mud, but that no longer mattered. Out in the rain, she had thought she could get no more wet; her thoughts had been wrong.

She was soaked through, every bone in her body groaning from dampness. She coughed once the cold got to her, trembling despite the fact that summer was almost upon her. It was wet and windy, and to her, it was cold.

Her cloak fell upon her from unseen hands, landing over her. She pulled it over her, getting as much warmth from it as she could. Moments passed like that, Merevaika huddled on the ground clutching her cloak over her, eyes closed and content. She was thankful for life, she was thankful. She had been so close to losing it then, ever so close.

But thanks to her savior, she wasn't dead.

She looked up, expecting to see a young Akalak or drykas who had also foolishly gone out in the rain. Instead, all she saw was her horse, looking at her with a warm, loving look, before coming over and picking the cloak up with his teeth, pulling it back over her.

Merevaika felt tears mix with the rain.

Eryunt stared at her, eyes unmoving and unchanging. It was as if he was trying to say: Why do you doubt this? She reached out without answering, placing her hand on his nose. His warm breath was comforting on her palm, and she slowly rose, pulling the cloak around her. At first, her moves were slow and hesitant, until she finally hugged him with a quick certain motion. Her arms wrapped around his neck, and the strider placed his head on her shoulder, happy and content with that position.

That moment lasted her lifetime, and more, and more than that still. That single moment, her horse and her together as one, as they should be, was enough, and if she had to, dying then and there wouldn't have been a problem. That moment was enough to replace her whole life.

She slowly pulled back, looking at the horse with guilt in her stance. He had saved her, but she was unworthy of it. It was time to make that right.
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Hunting in the Rain

Postby Merevaika on June 19th, 2015, 10:16 pm

Merevaika opened her mouth to speak, her actions starting to mimic her words to emphasize their meaning.
"Thank you," she began, thinking to those events. She had fallen, the water taken her, but Eryunt must have followed, wading through that deep and treacherous water he had been so unwilling to enter. That firm grip on her shirt, that was him, pulling her out the water. Not only that, but after saving her, he had cared for her, giving her her cloak as a blanket and standing guard. The horse had done so much to save his rider, who had first ignored his warnings then forced him to do something as dangerous. "Thank you, so much. Eryunt, you don't know what you mean to me, you really don't."

She paused for a second, reflecting on what she had said. "No, you might. It's me who doesn't understand how much you mean to me. You know, you care for me. I should too. I was stupid and reckless when I tried to get you to enter that river. But you, you tried to warn me of the dangers."

Merevaika wasn't one to listen to others, even if they meant to help. But Eryunt needed to be listened to, after all he did for her. He listened to her and did as she told him, even though he deserved more than her. " I didn't listen to you. I was so.. cruel and heartless, forcing you in after that. I promise, I will never do that again."

Memories of their bonding flashed past, when she had met the young foal and felt this beautiful bond, a connection that joined them for as long as they lived. It would live on past death, live on past the world ending. After all, it was a bond.

And it was Eryunt who chose her. She didn't deserve a horse as good as he was, but he had still chosen her, despite her flaws and weaknesses. Perhaps he had seen something, someone amazing past that headstrong, stubborn outer shell. Perhaps he though her could change her.

"You deserve better than me. You shouldn't need to be fishing me out of rivers, saving my life, even though if I had listened to you I wouldn't have been in that position in the first place. You deserve someone better, a warrior or a successful hunter, not a young woman like me who is lost and alone and cares too much about herself to ever connect with others. Someone who is kind and generous and honest, not a sly, cunning thief. Someone who deserves you."

Eryunt shook his head, as if replying to her. No, he seemed to say, I deserve you.

Merevaika climbed onto his back, this time letting him lead himself the safe way home. Nothing mattered anymore. Not the animal that was waiting on the island as an easy target for her, not the bird that still hung limply from Eryunt's yvas, soaked but still whole. Hunting didn't matter anymore, nor did the rain, nor did the coughing and cold and hunger and exhaustion.

All that mattered was that she was with Eryunt. All that mattered was that the two were alive and well. Together.

Forever.

And Merevaika knew that it would stay that way.
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Merevaika
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Hunting in the Rain

Postby Nivel on December 9th, 2015, 7:15 pm


Merevaika :
XP Award:
  • Observation 3
  • Endurance 3
  • Hunting 2
  • Riding 2
  • Acrobatics 1
  • Weapon: Short bow 3
  • Scavenge 1
  • Meditation 1
  • Tracking 2
  • Land Navigation 2
  • Butchering 1
  • Swimming 1
  • Animal husbandry 1
  • Rhetoric 1
Lore:
  • Event: The flooding of the Bluevien
  • Rain isn’t the best time to hunt
  • Helpless bird in the rain, Lucky catch
  • Failure to read Eryunt distress, don’t do it again
  • Eryunt Saved me from drowning
Notes: The interactions with your horse were wicked cute, Nice job. :)

Additional Comments: If you have any questions or concerns please feel free to message me.



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