PM to join [Monstrous Menagerie] Like Shattered Glass (Wikus)

Two visitors explore one of the city's strange exhibits.

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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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[Monstrous Menagerie] Like Shattered Glass (Wikus)

Postby Kaie on October 14th, 2015, 8:36 pm

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87th of Fall, 515 AV
Mid-day

Gods, did it smell refreshing. She inhaled deeply, letting the air enter her nostrils and fill her lungs with its coveted fragrance. Salty air. It certainly wasn't the first time she'd gotten her fill of its familiar scent. She'd had a harder time getting away from it as of late. The past few seasons had left her biding her time upon the deck of some type of vessel, and the Myrian was still far from seaworthy despite her troubles. Yet the air surrounding Riverfall was different. The smell of its nearby sea signaled the approaching end of her agonizing journey. Just one more trip across Laviku's domain and she'd be back upon the neighboring shore of Falyndar. One more round of retching overboard and she'd be home, free to drop to her knees upon its sands and kiss the ground her Goddess Queen dominated. Free to forget the wounds inflicted by the world across the Suvan Sea, and recover from the cruel lessons each season abroad instilled with scars to remind her.

Kaie moved through the masses that traversed Riverfall's streets, like a thread of bronze woven between patterns of blues, purples, and greens. Her cloak hood was firmly tugged over her wavy brown hair to conceal her exotic features with a deep shadow. Bladed boots clicked a steady rhythm upon the path that took her northwest of the falls, and away from the port filled with ships fit to sail her home. Each step elicited a hiss from healing wounds upon her torso. Dark spots still fresh upon her skin lulled a dull pain. The young woman took a sip of wine from the water skin hanging from her side. Not even the numb of alcohol could sway the logic of common sense: she wasn't ready. Trekking through the jungle was no easy task whether the traveler was native or otherwise. No sense in ending her odyssey so close to her final destination over some trivial, temporary vulnerabilities.

The words of an unusually friendly tavern keep led her toward a place rumored to be extraordinary in its exhibition. A true intrigue of Riverfall, he promised. When the Myrian's boots halted in their tracks, wide eyes and a craned neck found they couldn't discredit his suggestion. Towering above its subject complexes was a massive translucent dome. Syna's assault was captured and shimmered across its surface, giving the swirling aerial creatures dwelling within a brighter glow to their colorful wings. Whatever it was made of, it was certainly a glass far superior to those the savage had found elsewhere in her travels. Amber eyes blinked away their incredulity, an curiosity let her into a nearby complex. The corridor swallowed her whole in its absence of light, leading her down and down with enough mystery to keep her on her toes.

Before long the corridor opened into a wider room with gentle lighting. To one side it seemed she had entered a cave. Stalagmites and stalactites gave authenticity to the scene in a way that made the Myrian heartbeat quicken with distant memory of eerie howls. Hammocks hung here and there about the dim place. The intricate weaving of spider webs above sent the woman's sword hand shooting for her gladius hilt, lip curling as stories and experiences hinted at what was near. She ventured further from the corridor to explore what laid within the room. Movement in her left peripheral vision sent the Myrian in a rapid pivot, adrenaline gently rushing her veins to feed anxious muscles. What had I seen flitting from her view? Pale flesh? a cautious mind demanded from higher powers rhetorically. Another step and the faintness of her own reflection brought forth a rational mind. Glass. An exhibit like the tavern keep had raved about. Her left hand reached forth to confirm just that, fingers curling to gently rake down the surface to ensure its solidarity.

A pale figure in the innermost left corner, the same place that sent her into a tizzy prior, reappeared just long enough for her to catch the resentful expression of a male. Just as quickly he completed his disappearing act at the back of his prison. Coming into the foreground, however, arrived a female far bolder than her counterpart. Her agile frame posted against a stalagmite that touched the ceiling. The claw-like fingernail of her index finger teased her bottom lip. Kaie swallowed hard. A discomfort entered her middle that was not fear. The dark eyes of the creature settled on the newest visitor. Her brow arched for a tick before curiosity sent her sauntering closer to the glass to inspect the cloaked face. The firmness of her gaze sent a dagger through the Myrian's body. Kaie's right hand slipped defeated from the gladius hilt. The savage stared back with a gaze just as unwavering, and as if the Symenestra had voiced the command, the Myrian found herself foolishly removing the cloak from her head.

Shadows vanished from her face to reveal the fiercely sharp features beneath. Wavy brown hair cascaded around her shoulders. Delight entered the Symenestra's expression at the sight of the bronze skin that gave off its foreign, sun-kissed glow. Has she ever seen a Myrian before? The Tigress growled from the back of her conscious mind. The Symenestra were enemies to her people, abominations long ago eradicated from the jungles Myrians now dominated. They were marked for death in the borders of Falyndar. Still the swell of guilt, like the conscience warning of something wrong, consumed her. She reminds me of Shai, Kaie finally concluded, unable to shake the resemblance between the creature behind the glass and her Scar comrade. The two hadn't exchanged so much as a word, but the ingenuity of the fragile woman had won the jungle-born's respect. Loyalty never wavers.

Yet she would be a liar if she claimed it was easy to still the traitorous sword-hand's impulse, to take the pommel of her gladius and shatter the glass walls of her racial enemy's prison.

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[Monstrous Menagerie] Like Shattered Glass (Wikus)

Postby Wikus on October 17th, 2015, 12:38 pm

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It was hard to deny the imminent proximity of the winter. It wasn’t just felt in the air, the breeze, or the stone, but it was also starting to infect the inhabitants with the dormant need to seek refuge whenever the light waned. Each new dawn brought new layers of clothes onto the inhabitants, a more gloomy tone, many silent scoffs. It was hard to show joy as the flowers that usually decorated Riverfall were slowly withering, instead being exchanged for the few plants strong enough to bloom in winter, their colors not being bright and stunning but instead pale and morbid, almost a reminder of the few hopes that managed to survive the harsh winter. Coughs and sneezes spread around the stone city for those whom were not careful enough to pay the proper respects to the incoming season. Most visitors were either gone or already found a den in which to hide from the waves of frozen winds and the creatures whom look desperate for pray around the city. What was once a stone paradise by the sea, at least in the warmer seasons, was to become a cold cage in which those not strong enough to resist were to perish.

But not for Wikus. Joyfully walking about barefoot, even when the stone below his feet almost burned the flesh due to the intense cold, there wasn’t a single care given to the incoming season. In fact, he was more worried to getting used to the city instead of perishing within it, for he had stayed long enough to assure himself that, eventually, every building that stood between the walls would be known to him. His clothes, light and loose to keep the heat off, were still his preferred choice, the open shirt that fluttered with the winds being one of the very few still present in Riverfall, not even the Akalak being to surpass his apparent bravery. Some looked astonished as he defied the elements, others glanced maliciously as they hoped he’d soon be heated in a pyre, and very few stared with clear envy as his health did not wane no matter how cold the weather got. Yet he paid no heed to looks, or any of the inhabitants at least, for he was more interested in the stationary buildings that always managed to surprise him even if he stared at them for days.

The former Drykas tried building after building, stepping inside just to check the reaction of the eyes that greeted him, that being enough most of the times to check if he was indeed in a public place or instead someplace he did not have any sort of business. As he walked his stomach was fueled with the small pouch of walnuts he had acquired in one of his improvised visits to the unknown businesses, having bought them only for the purpose of not presenting himself awkwardly as he stared at the vast quantities of stock. No matter how hard he tried, he just couldn’t get used to a life as civilized and comfortable Riverfall offered. Surely it was his ignorance the cause of the easily invoked curiosity. That did not bother him, as his sojourn through the multiple open doors of the city continued.

Eventually he found himself once again lost in a colossal building he had seen but never approached before, where glass rose untamed through the skies and loft his hopes for new experiences. Carefully moving through the halls, his eyes just couldn’t recover their usual squint as instead they were wide open, not only surprised at the collection of animals kept in captivity but also for the environments crafted just to fit the animal in question. Many he recognized, like hyenas or even a glassbeak he kindly moved past from, but others he had never seen up close and personal as he felt the brief encounters were. With some species he attempted to interact, either with a wave to test if the animal was alive, or by a harsh and unexpected motion in order to attempt to scare those eyes that stared from a distance. Of course, he wasn’t a daredevil, so instead of waiting around for an aggressive response, he moved along further inside – it was addictive to feel so safe from beasts that would otherwise not doubt to claim his inked flesh as a meal.

Eventually, he reached a somewhat secluded section of the bizarre animal grounds. It wasn’t a secret location, nor was away from the eyes of the crowds that had too lost themselves in this otherworldly building in which scenes from miles and miles away took life – all between the walls of a city. Many visitors stood before a rather big glass panel, which was worthy of admiration itself in the eyes of the lonesome Drykas whom hadn’t witnessed glass as big sized as this one. He wanted to touch it badly, to make sure it truly was glass as he imagined, to confirm the suspicion that said material did not only serve as colorful bottles or reduced windows. Yet, despite having never seen a panel as big in his long life, he refrained from gaining the reputation of a simpleton amongst the colorful male inhabitants that owned the city. Instead, he focused on the decoration and an attempt to immerse himself in the scene that whomever built this place wished to recreate. Rocks that connected both ceiling and floor waving strangely pleasing patterns, beautiful if not fake as they appeared – no rock would ever rise above one’s head without collapsing. Sharp edges and weird carvings on rock that served as walls or simple obstacles in what lied on the other side of the glass… All fake to a man whom had never seen a cave, nor had ever experienced anything that wasn’t an open world before him.

For a tick, he couldn’t quite figure out the meaning of this part of the exhibit. While he attempted to find some reason on why he shouldn’t approach the glass and laying a hand on it, instead he glanced around at the visitors that gathered nearby. More of those gigantic men, all with their respective skin colors, were plaguing this section. An apparent Drykas that was watching the glass, the smell of his horses’ shyke having kept track of his footsteps as the intense stick flooded the section. An old man whose face was as rugged as the cuts on the eerie rock on the other side of the panel watched too, from a distance, as he chewed on the nothingness as many of his age did. And finally, he laid eyes on the only female that stood before the glass. While a woman was quite rare to be spotted without a blue suitor following her footsteps, the dark hair and tan skin was even rarer – perhaps for him. Drykas females were all made by the same artisan when it comes to comparing them to the one he now glanced at, all of them having a blond or lightly reddish hair and a skin as pale as snow itself. This woman was different – yet she too was distracted, almost taken aback by the rocks that stood on the other side. Could fake rocks really bring this much attention?

Finally, even if his observation skills were minimal, Wikus decided it was time to take a step forth and lay a hand on the glass while nobody watched. A couple of small, silent strides forward brought with a placid gait were enough to take him to his destination, a hand reaching out to touch the glass with the whole palm. It was glass, indeed, yet it was thick as no sound of vibration came after his touch. Running his hand down, feeling the coldness of the exotic material with his full attention, it wasn’t until he opened his eyes that he saw it – a shadow moving on the other side of the glass, somewhere at the end of the closed space. Retrieving his hand, it was only then when his eyes abandoned any kind of shame and thoroughly inspected what lied on the other side, almost instantly stepping back as he saw the unknown and previously unseen frame of the Symenestra female. Startled, and somewhat angry at himself for not having noticed such important being in its apparent habitat, he’d take one of the wallnuts and direct it towards the glass with a harsh toss – only causing the walnut to ricochet and reach a new improvised target. Truly, the grown up man was as ignorant as a child.

OOC NoteSorry for the length, I got carried away.
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[Monstrous Menagerie] Like Shattered Glass (Wikus)

Postby Kaie on October 25th, 2015, 7:09 pm

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Her fingers strangled the handle of her sword. Her composed, amber stare wrestled with the perplexed one of the spider-woman. A tick of insanity brought her bicep tightening, metal slipping slowly from its prison at her hip. Click! The savage froze. Brows rose and her eyes were cast away from the glass just in time to watch the tiny projectile find purchase upon her boot. So incredulous was her surprise that one might've thought it safe to assume she was hit with an arrow, rather than the poor toss from a man who must've forgotten the thick glass was immune to the attack of a walnut. Idiotic thoughts put away, her sword-hand dropped back to her side. Kaie pivoted on her heels to spy the thrower: a tall, bearded man with enough ink to intrigue a decorated Myrian.

"You don't want those things on this side of the glass. Trust me," Kaie laughed dryly. Her boot gave a side-swipe at the walnut, sending it reeling back toward its owner. The stories of the web-spinning people eradicated from Falyndar were enough to make even the bravest Myrian child anxious in the night. Part of her could feel the gaze of the Symenestra still upon her, but she resisted paying the creature more mind. After all, it was not Shai though it perhaps very well could've been. Besides, if the roles were reversed would an old comrade set a captured Myrian free to respect a gang that no longer breathed life? "Then again, maybe you should give another walnut a good throw in hopes it breaks through. They'd be better off dead anyways."

A few hostile murmurs from the resident Akalaks had the woman tossing the hood back over her head promptly. A younger, more egotistic version of herself might've spat at them ages prior. Though her pride did not waver, she'd learned not to overlook the stigma pinned upon her race. A few strides brought her closer to the walnut-thrower.
"I haven't been here long, but I don't remember seeing many human males last time I was in the city." The complex pattern of colors and shapes that criss-crossed his skin in every direction, popping out of his open shirt and traversing his arms like a coiling snake, left the woman's lips pursing with question. Windmarks? A Drykas? That's narrow minded. I know too little about them, and plenty of other humans have tattoos. Sunberth sure had its lot of inked fiends. Studious eyes slipped lower to find his feet. I don't know any sort but my own that prefers to ditch shoes either.

"I would guess you're at least far from home. What brought you to Riverfall?" If her traditional form of dress, a loin cloth and leather vest beneath a simple brown cloak, wasn't enough to clue the man into just how foreign she was, the Common words brutalized by her native accent must've given him a hint.

OOC:No worries! I'll never complain about too much detail as long as you're having fun with it. :)
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[Monstrous Menagerie] Like Shattered Glass (Wikus)

Postby Wikus on December 11th, 2015, 11:55 am

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Wikus froze in the spot after the realization of the futility of his tantrum, the walnut finding target in the female inspected previously, and unfortunately said nut did capture her attention. While he thought about apologizing, the somewhat bizarre way of dressing didn’t quite reassure him of her disposition to listen to vaguely pronounced apologies, so instead he took the biggest acting challenge and pretended to become a statue that only stared onward. Although the effort was there, his own lack of experience combined with the nervous and guilty mind quite clearly sabotaged him as his eyes jumped again and again towards the female to bring only further insecurity as the female did not quite ignore him and instead approached him with both words and steps. Taking a tight brace on the basket that hanged from his left hand and the few flowers it carried, he attempted to ignore the female until she proved with her position that, indeed, she didn’t quite seem the type of person to let go of his aggressive walnut’s landing spot. Visible signs of anxiousness only escalating further, finally he desisted on his fight and acknowledged the guilt.

“…Sorry.” He muttered in a trembling voice, an effect he didn’t quite mean to be present but nevertheless escaped him, unfortunately enough to somewhat overfill his being with even further doubts about the female’s intentions. Glancing at the shorter female, one of the bare feet went on to receive the returned walnut by taking a hold of it with his toes and bringing it up with hesitation – both from the difficulty of the task, and the ever present possibility of being stricken by the female. With some effort, and an unnatural vigilance towards the female from his two widely open and somewhat characteristic blue eyes, the walnut was eventually deposited in his right palm to finally return him to a proper stance – and clear the doubts that he was an ape that had escaped from its cage. The hand, slow and steady as if being watched by a hyena, returned the stray walnut into the small pouch it came out of, which dangerously balanced on his opposite hand’s palm.

While he could barely speak any common, he could understand the general gist of what was communicated to him – especially as his full attention was directed to the female. Her assertion about the lack of colorless males in the city, while completely true and agreeable by him, was instead interpreted as a hostile remark against his being. Wikus couldn’t claim he was afraid of women in general, yet this particular female is a clear exception. He lacked the experience to pinpoint as to what in her being was so fear-inducing for him, but it was possible it was a mixture of the tan skin’s beauty combined with the bizarre clothing, all toped with the extremely confident stance he saw. The simple thoughts of replying were hard enough to perform, and so any harsh or rude reply to her irking statement was discarded momentarily. “I here for …uhm… visit. Sorry for not be …b-b-blue. ” He managed to stutter at last, his own lilt being also quite enough to state his immigrant status within the city and the language itself.

His toes, lightly sweating on the cold stone below, began dancing nervously, rubbing themselves on the floor automatically as the male suffered from an immense pressure before the female. His eyes, blue as typically seen in Drykas, only glanced towards the female every now and then yet never for more than what was needed for him to confirm her presence, instead flying of somewhere differently each time they returned from the scarring embers that were her eyes, unable to face them. Hiding his face in a frown, this was one of the few times he begged his beard to be bushier. Given that the female didn’t quite move from her spot nor desisted on her inspection, finally he gathered up enough valor to speak for himself. “W-What animal is?” he’d mutter once again, clearing swiftly his throat afterwards as his voice itself seemed to attempt hiding. Just the mere action of asking a question was enough to set his bearded face on metaphorical fire, the blush coming in strong on his somewhat pale skin. To divert the attention from himself, he’d nod towards the glass wall he attempted to shatter earlier, and complimenting the gesture with a pointing finger which only use was to enhance a possible target in which the female could focus instead of watching him through the hood – which of course gave her the presence of a proper hyena stalking an hare. Being the hare was not pleasant, he thought, as he swallowed in attempts of moistening his dry throat.
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[Monstrous Menagerie] Like Shattered Glass (Wikus)

Postby Kaie on December 29th, 2015, 3:47 am

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Despite her undeniably dauntless approach, she'd be quite the liar if she claimed there was no caution in her advance. The man was certainly of a bizarre breed. He was anxious, trembling, and it seemed as though with each of her steps he came that much closer to wriggling out of his own skin. Then there was the peculiar flower basket hanging from one of his hands. It wasn't that she found anything emasculating about a man with a collection of flora of any sort. It didn't matter where she went, presenting someone with flowers seemed to be appropriate for most occasions. Barbarians gifted them out of love, infatuation, friendship, and condolence. She'd even known a Myrian man or two to woo a powerful female with an impressive collection of wild flowers, especially given many of the most stunning of the lot had to be discovered within the domain of a deadly jungle outside Taloba's walls. Yet the basket, in this case, only added to the enigma before her. So curious of a figure was he that even the exhibit behind her was quickly fading from her attention. And...did he just pick up that walnut with his toes?

"You shouldn't apologize for what you are," she responded with a furrowed brow, apparently confused by his statement about his own skin. She flashed him a rare grin she hoped succeeded in something that resembled reassurance. After all, he was merely just another visitor to the city that simply didn't truly belong. Was she no different? She felt the cloak sliding off her shoulder. Liberating the man but for a tick from her gaze, her nimble fingers readjusted the cloak and secured it back in place. The mousy volume of his words almost fell deaf upon her ears, and they probably would've altogether had he not commanded her undivided attention despite unfamiliar surroundings.

What animal is this? Kaie repeated to herself in her thoughts, brow furrowing again as if she meant to ask him to elaborate before she remembered just where she was. The woman pivoted on her heels to peer behind her at the exhibit. She frowned, though instinct had her fighting the urge to curl her lips when the exhibit's prisoners were caught staring. Still, she couldn't help but let her mind wander back toward Sunberth. That's all they are to these people. The Riverfall denizens. The Riverfall visitors. I suppose I wasn't raised to think any differently. We see them as vermin to be eradicated. Here they're deemed intriguing enough to preserve. She cleared her throat and turned back toward the stranger, expression smoothing over. A thumb was jutted at the creatures behind her back.
"Symenestra. Spider People." Kaie moved closer to the glass despite the female that still lingered there, staring at the pair. She pointed up high in the stalactites toward the drooping hammocks and where a male was effortlessly clambering up his enclosure walls. Then he dropped softly into the hammock, turning his back to his audience with a hiss.

"My people tell stories from the times when they still lived in the northern parts of our jungles." For once she decided to leave out that crude detail of undeniable genocide in which the Myrians enthusiastically slaughtered those they found, and then destroyed most signs of their habitation. Besides, the surviving population was clever enough to surrender and evacuate Falyndar anyways. "I am Kaie. What is your name? Where do you come from?" This time she let her words slip from her lips casually and a bit slower, but not so slow as if to offend his intelligence despite his lack of fluency. Truthfully, she had little reason to expect an answer from the man. After all, what did he owe her? She was just a stranger at a zoo. Nothing Kaie had done up to that point commanded his respect. At least not the way her own mind worked.
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[Monstrous Menagerie] Like Shattered Glass (Wikus)

Postby Wikus on December 29th, 2015, 6:54 am

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How could he not apologize for what he was? Inquired Wikus in the mind where he usually dwelled. Over the many years lived he had worn many faces, all his but different for those who watched. Cursed, ambitious, aggressive, mad, charming… Now came the turn of the outcast, the shy wanderer that can barely speak a word and avoids people out of fear of their rejection. All the attitudes and ideals once earned had mingled and mixed into a form that now represented a mess of a man which simply lacked any kind of personality. Nevertheless, he has always been unyielding and that trait would never leave him whilst he lived. In a way, he saw that same trait in the female as he carefully glanced towards her whenever he believed she wasn’t looking or paying attention. Despite her friendly approach, Kaie still emanated respect and power unconsciously. Or at least, that is what Wikus believed.

Spider people were something new to him, so much that a frown formed on his face when he tried to remember their name. At the end, he simply discarded said name and would from now on call them Spider People. Like a child, he’d follow the female's gestures and finally spot a figure moving in the ceiling of the fake environment, even letting an enchanted ovation of wonder escape him. Having been stuck between humans and horses for most of his life, only now he began to truly discover the bizarre world he was living in. “Spider People…” He’d repeat, still pondering on the qualities they’d possessed. If his vocabulary was enough, he wouldn’t have feared to ask if they too could produce silk out of their rears just like true spiders. Despite how bizarre the question may have been, it was an inquiry he needed an answer for urgently. “I be Wikus. I from outside walls, River of Green.” He’d reply some ticks afterwards, casually letting the somewhat incorrect information slip yet matching it with a cautious glance towards the female – her presence was still menacing, despite her friendly and soothed antics.

His gaze was often fighting between laying on the Spider Woman on the other side of the glass and Kaie herself – comparing the two females and their appearance. The Spider Woman was not really menacing, the glass keeping her locked away like a dog is kept captive by a leash. Pale skin contrasted highly with the bronze skin of the nearby female, their motions being extreme opposites. The Spider Woman moved slowly and carefully, with remarkable patience, waiting for a prey to fall on her metaphorical or perhaps simply invisible cobweb. Kaie however moved bluntly, without any refinement or elegance, as if stating to the whole world that she was there and any trouble headed her way was to be solved by her hand. Wikus himself was inspired by her presence, feeling as if her company was slowly peeling away his dead skin and slowly bringing out the man that hid beneath. He was addicted to said sensation.

Of course, it would take him some time to finally burst out from his bubble. Only his best efforts could accelerate the process, and with that thought in mind he actually stepped forth towards the female. It was a single step that took him a lot of courage to perform, but it was very symbolic for him even if the powerful female herself wouldn’t give it importance. “Umm…” The words hesitated to follow his foot’s example, yet now that he had revealed his intention to speak, they simply couldn’t hide much longer. “What is…?” He sighed, running a hand down his face in attempts of clearing his being of the anxiousness. It wasn’t very effective. “What is jungle?” He felt really awkward after the query, almost as if he had trespassed a barrier that was erected not destined to men like him. How would the female react? Would she laugh in his face at his ignorance, humiliating him? Leave him here as she went on with someone that could establish a better conversation, perhaps someone who knew how the world actually worked?

Fearing he’d lose Kaie’s interest or her inspiring presence, he’d quickly get to work. Shoving a hand in his bag of walnuts as casually as he could, he’d squeeze two of them with force in order to shatter their wall and, after disposing of those in the same bag, leave only the nuts in his palm. Now in possession of something to bribe her interest in keeping close, he’d step forth once more as he extended the palm of his hand towards the female and offered his nuts to her. Normally he would have offered a flower, yet he doubted said female would show interest for something so simple - apparently, nobody cared about the flowers as he did. Maybe a smile would have been a better match for the gesture instead of the worried and extremely harsh frown he displayed on his bearded face, yet he was only able to anguish over one issue at a time with the nerves that plagued him. “Do you… come from jungle?” He barely managed to mutter the last part, his features slowly starting to acquire a slight blush that was unfortunately escalating. He was still so far away from peeling away all the remains of his doubts and once again be as he once was, but she could help him soar once again.
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[Monstrous Menagerie] Like Shattered Glass (Wikus)

Postby Kaie on January 17th, 2016, 7:00 pm

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"Wikus," Kaie tasted the name on her tongue, amused to find it had a pleasant ring to it that made uttering it no boring experience. She flashed her new acquaintance her teeth now that he'd finally removed himself from the realm of total strangeness. Bronze fingers shook themselves through an organized chaos of wavy brown curls on her head. "River of Green?" The Myrian pondered the thought for several ticks. The young woman had never had the chance to come across a green river if such a thing existed within the realm of the world she inhabited. Yet, she had traversed great seas without a vessel. The great expanse of Mizahar was never solely confined to literal descriptions. She'd learned that long ago. "You mean you're from the east? The land ruled by the Drykas?" Kaie paused for a mere tick as if she'd developed an epiphany. Could this man indeed be a Drykas then? she considered for a moment before continuing her thoughts aloud. "The Akalak and the people in the far east used to tell me they call the great grass plains between Riverfall and Syrlias the Sea of Grass. I'm assuming the Sea of Grass and your River of Green are one and the same. " The conclusion had her brow furrowing for a tick once more. Never in Endrykas or with their Drykas guides years ago had anyone referred to the land as a Green River though.

Shaking her skepticism off for now, the Myrian let her gaze wander back to the exhibit that had captivated both herself and Wikus chimes ago. The female Symenestra had given up on commanding the attention of the jungle-born and instead departed from the glass, much to the dismay of some other arriving patrons to the exhibit. The slender and agile woman wove her way through the cave-like interior in the direction of the male. Then, as if validating Kaie's perhaps over-simplification of their race, she scaled a column and gracefully hide herself away in a hammock high above. The young woman couldn't help but think of the way Shai had effortlessly made her appearances through The Quay's window when the group was summoned rather than using the door.

Wikus's suddenly approach had the jungle-born's head snapping to follow his movement. It was a single, harmless step. It garnered her attention nonetheless. She sensed no animosity in his body language. Only a bit of frustration on his face that came to fruition when he struggles to voice the question that plagued him so. What is jungle? It was a simple question and yet there was so much depth in the eyes of someone of had come to know its heart. Before she could try and formulate an appropriate answer for the curious man, his hands was digging in his pockets, a sharp crack was heard, and then he presented her with nuts. Kaie's smile was far more genuine this time. How like a barbarian man, offering his nuts at first chance. She carefully took the gift and uttered her thanks. The nuts were toyed with between her fingers for a moment, the unfamiliar savage inspecting them carefully. It would've been a poor way to die, voluntarily eating food that turned out to be natural poison. Then again, it felt strange someone who wanted an answer from her might poison her before she could give them just that.


"Yes, I come from the jungle," she started simply, tossing the nuts back and chewing slowly, tasting them only to find they weren't bad at all. "The jungle is to the west across the Suvan Sea in a land called Falyndar. It's...like your Green River but with far more trees. It's always hot and humid, thick with foliage. You know, trees, bushes, grasses. There's plenty of animals too, but none so dangerous as the ones that live in the City of Bones." She laughed at her final, pompous statement. It was probably true that the militarized city of Taloba filled with bloodthirsty savages was not to be trifled with. However, the beasts of Falyndar were always hungry and few predators would pass up a copper-skinned meal out of fear of even Myri.

"What about you?" she tried soon after with an inquisitive look in her eyes. Both her hands lifted visibly before her. "You Drykas? Pavi?" her hands fumbled with the shoddy work of Pavi sign, and the humbled expression of her face probably said just as much. It was a shot in the dark, but one she took anyway.
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[Monstrous Menagerie] Like Shattered Glass (Wikus)

Postby Wikus on January 20th, 2016, 3:05 am

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“Sea of Grass, yes…” The name often slipped through his mind, never quite being able to recall it twice for some reason. Failing at properly naming his homeland was a mistake that ashamed him at times, while others made him feel totally indifferent depending on his mood. Nodding to corroborate her deduction, Wikus shrugged afterwards to claim his innocence regarding the subject. He had seen the sea for the first time in his stay in Riverfall, and the word grass in the common language was unknown to him, so he used those two points to excuse his ignorance. Gazing into the dark beyond the glass, once again he wondered as to how much world was unbeknown to him. After the nuts exchanged hands, he shattered a few for himself in the same quick and abrupt manner he did ticks ago. Tossing the nuts inside his mouth, he’d struggle a bit to chew them due to the issues with his teeth, making strange faces that displayed the dispute between nut and teeth.

Her small description of these jungle territories kept him occupied, however. Rather than minding and planning how to approach his rather poor choice of meal, he tried to imagine a scenery thanks to Kaie’s description. Although it was rather vague, she did offer some details in simplistic words that even he could understand. Never before he would have managed to come across a realm as the one Kaie described. Looking forth and seeing only vegetation was hard to imagine, constant heat and humidity wearing down the body, fauna creeping in every direction. Considering her choice of attire, it was proof that she indeed was not speaking lies. It was impressive how much the female knew, even if her age was not as advanced as his own. In a way, he wished his pipe was lit to enjoy these vague experiences and for one listen to something other than his own voice or his donkey.

The City of Bones, although not quite part of her story, still felt extraordinary. Just the name was imposing, leaking respect as much as Kaie herself did. Wikus’ brows instantly arched as she laughed, a bit surprised and obviously oblivious as to the meaning of it. Nevertheless it did felt quite funny. He was further surprised once the female’s hands came forth and contorted with meaning, the Grassland Sign being immediately recognized even if he rarely used it. The questions piled up, and the intrigue towards the female only kept growing. Freeing his hand of the pouch, he’d perform two silent claps and with the right hand gesturing an approach with his fingers. The expression was a rather odd one, its meaning being a rough ‘words welcome’ Drykas used to state they could speak, used mostly during hunts. The basket that hanged from his left arm somewhat hindered his gestures, yet they came slowly and as clearly as possible to return the curtesy of her slow words. His words also came forth, speaking the secondary part of the language whenever he felt they were needed.

“Drykas.” Inviting, jolly. “Pavi?” Surprised, happy. Wikus subtly pointed at Kaie and advanced towards her, slowly yet somewhat cleansed of his doubts. How did you learn? Wikus was obviously having a blast, even if he had grown a hatred towards anything regarding Drykas. To think Kaie knew some Pavi really was something impressive. A smile had secretly appeared on his features, feeling somewhat understood for once. “Endrykas.” Nostalgic, lonely, home. “Riverfall, not good.” Coldness, harshness, strangeness, abuse. Pointing towards a pair of Akalaks that tried to be subtle about their disgusted stares, Wikus would make them the protagonists of his next statement. “See?” Dumb, big, arrogant, abusive. For once, he could finally share his thoughts regarding these men. His Pavi was somewhat rusty, too, and some strange gestures came once in a while.

He halted for a moment, scoffing for himself as he shook his head lightly. “Understand?” He’d ask in Common as he looked down on the female. He didn’t quite know how to react now that they had various methods of communications. His socialization was also a problem he needed to fix someday, quite unable at times to carry on a conversation without sinking it at one point. This point had apparently come, as all he could do was once again grab for his walnuts and start shattering them.
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[Monstrous Menagerie] Like Shattered Glass (Wikus)

Postby Kaie on March 14th, 2016, 12:46 am

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Just like that it was if the savage had managed to open pandora's box. The timid, odd man before her seemed to almost awaken with the arrival of Kaie's poor display of Pavi. His hands went up before him, and the gestures of a people she'd been in contact with so very long ago began coming forth. Her brow knit together as her eyes diligently followed the movements of his hands that conveyed meaning. Pavi had been difficult for the young woman to learn. Unlike the tongues of many other barbarians, Pavi has a mix between words and sign. One had to be careful to pair both together correctly to discover the entire context of even a simple conversation. To lose one or the other was to lose the personal context all together. It was a wonder she'd managed to pick up any of it at all. Yet with the help of the Drykas she and her father had traveled with for some time through the Sea of Grass, Kaie had the luxury of picking up a small repertoire. Time had not been too kind to her recollection in that moment though. Just when she thought she was following along with Wikus, she'd find herself lost again. Another good reason for taking a ship around Cyphrus to get to Riverfall rather than a horse straight through it, Kaie whined internally but soldiered on the best she could nonetheless. Despite the blank expression on her face, the woman cleared her throat and made her attempt to keep up anyways.

"Uh, some," the Myrian woman answered his question in Common quite bluntly with an apologetic shrug of her shoulders. She scratched at her head and held up an index finger toward Wikus before switching to Pavi again. "Pavi. Drykas teachers." Sorrow, grateful. "Endrykas long ago." Nostalgic. Her lips pressed together in a hard line. There was already a stark contrast to their abilities. Her lexicon of gestures was far smaller than her conversation partner's, and worse, she'd managed to lose some of what he'd said. However, he had gestured toward the nearby Akalak looking on with some sort of negativity. Kaie glanced their way and nodded in their general direction. Big, colorful, secrets. "Good challenge for Myrian." Confident, hopeful. The Akalak, thanks to Kaie's poor skills in subtly when it came to sign, were becoming more outward in their disdain. Their stares were more straight on as the pair, presumably, babbled about the Myrian and the Drykas to one another in Tukant.

Why here? "Endrykas," The Myrian stopped herself right there and shook her head with a sheepish expression. To avoid blatantly humiliating herself by attempting to get more complex with Pavi, she switched back to Common for both their sake. "When I was in Endrykas, it moved. We met Drykas riders here when the city came closer to Riverfall in Spring. I thought around this time the pavilions would be toward Syliras and heading south for winter. Why are you so far from home in a city unkind to you?" Now and then her gaze moved past Wikus to keep an eye on the pair of Akalak. She could feel their stares now and then still, prompting the next comment over Wikus's shoulder she merely couldn't resist voicing. "Hey, boys! The exhibit's on that side of the glass!"
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[Monstrous Menagerie] Like Shattered Glass (Wikus)

Postby Theo Popcampio on July 14th, 2016, 12:47 pm

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With good faith and lots of loot,

 
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As always I tried my bestest to award what I could. Let me know what you think and if you have any questions, concerns, or I missed something. Happy hunting!
 
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  • Location: The Monstrous Menagerie
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  • Wikus: Of the River of Green


 
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Grades withheld until your glorious return. :wasted:


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