Completed Moving targets

Summer job thread 1

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The Diamond of Kalea is located on Kalea's extreme west coast and called as such because its completely made of a crystalline substance called Skyglass. Home of the Alvina of the Stars, cultural mecca of knowledge seekers, and rife with Ethaefal, this remote city shimmers with its own unique light.

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Moving targets

Postby Raeyn on June 3rd, 2018, 4:08 pm

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1st of Summer 518AV

In the cool, crisp rays of the morning sun that peeked though the windows, the whole house seemed a little more welcoming. The old, creaking floor boards seemed a little softer to the Inarta who once again woke up with his face pressed against them. He'd rolled out of bed in the night, pulling the blankets with him, to be awoken by the first rays of dawn in something of an unintentional blanket fort.

But it was the first day of summer. The promise of warmer days to come. The air felt electrified with anticipation as he gathered himself up off the floor, glancing to the hound who was still snoozing at the foot of his bed. A short whistle left Rae's lips and in turn a fuzzy ear twitched to catch the sound.

It was an early morning ritual. The moment Rae lit the fire in the hearth, the hound was up and wagging his tail, trotting around and nuzzling his owner in anticipation of food. In turn the owner petted the beast and watched as tufts of fur flew up into the air. The summer malt was upon him and Rae was dreading the prospect of breathing dog hair for a week and half.

The dancing of flames and cracking of embers seemed to wake up more than just the dog as a loud yawn and a muffled hello came from the pile of blankets that was Rae's twin sister Mara. Whilst Rae was very much a morning person, one of those who had sorted out breakfast, walked the dog, dusted every surface in the house twice and made the beds, and all before the 8th bell - Mara however, would make the most of every rest in the day and then some.

"Hello to you too, sister." he spoke, not taking his eyes off the pot.

One by one he peeled a handful of sweet potatoes and tossed them into the bubbling water. Then he took a long stake onto which he impaled some scraps of unseasoned chicken, roasting them in the flames. He'd twirl them in his hands, exposing all sides of the meat to the heat until the skin turned black. It was a modest breakfast. Rae divided the food equally between himself, his sister and the pooch. The dog was commanded to sit, stay and lay down before finally being allowed his feast.

"How long will you be gone for?" asked Mara, finally joining Rae and the dog for breakfast.

"I'm expecting to be back tonight. I doubt we'll need to go far out."

"Hmm." she nodded. "Do be careful, brother."

She had always said those words and he always listened, even if in the forests surrounding the misty peaks, one could never truly expect to be safe. The life of a hunter was the life of a risk taker. Then again, he'd never admit it but Rae did enjoy an occasional rush of adrenaline.

Later that morning Rae would gather his equipment, his bow and traps, tied his hair up out of the way and said goodbye to the safe interior of his home. With Ru the dog at his side he walked past the Shinya guards until, at last, he breathed the air of the wilderness. Behind him Summer beacons burned yellow against the majesty that was the city of Skyglass.
Last edited by Raeyn on June 11th, 2018, 8:30 pm, edited 6 times in total.
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A dog needs to eat

Postby Raeyn on June 3rd, 2018, 5:23 pm

There was a freedom to being outside of the city. But with that freedom there came the fear of danger, the feeling of beastly eyes on the back of Raeyn's neck. He was a big red target for misfortune in this region. Whilst Ru hopped from pebble to pebble wagging his tail, Raeyn took each step with care as they descended down the peak, on a familiar path towards the forest. He tested each patch of dirt and stone with his toes, to make sure he wouldn't step on a loose rock and go tumbling down the mountain. In the city one could get around swiftly and without worry but outside of the city gates it was a wholly different story.

His bow was drawn and an arrow in hand, should he need to fend off a sudden threat. His ears paid attention to every movement along the rocks. So used to the sound of his companion animal he was that he could drown it out. The early morning chirping of birds too was just background noise. He listened for scuttling in the undergrowth, the squeaks of pikas, leaps of rabbits and screams of hawks. For where there were predators there would be prey.

Raeyn looked around constantly, eyes peeled for the slightest hints of movement in his peripheral vision. A few times during the descent he would be startled by a sudden gust of wind in the ferns, or a cracking of branches. A few times he'd spot a rabbit just out of the corner of his eye but by the time his bow followed the target, the creature had dived into the warren. Opportunist kills weren't his strong point. Once or twice he'd even fire a hastily arrow, only to miss the rump it was aimed for.

Once a little lower in altitude, where the fog cleared from the air and the late morning rays warmed the air, was where the hunt began. In the distance Raeyn could still just about make out Lhavit's beacons burning yellow. Plunging a stick vertically into the soil, he marked where he would come off the trail and committed the place to memory. This was where the challenge began.
Last edited by Raeyn on June 4th, 2018, 2:45 pm, edited 2 times in total.
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A dog needs to eat

Postby Raeyn on June 3rd, 2018, 6:08 pm

Lower down the mountain rabbits came popping out more often. And just as quickly as they popped up they would disappear again, sometimes in groups, sometimes alone. Major warren networks had to be close. A whistle beckoned the hunter's hound to him and obediently the animal came. Rae knelt down, ruffling Ru's fur to the clear glee of the animal. The bond between the two needed no words. A dog and his master, each dependant on the other for work, survival and companionship.

"You smell rabbit, Ru? You smell it?" spoke Raeyn quietly, his voice bearing a tinge of excitement to which the dog responded with a bark. In his hand he held out a little vial of the prey's scent, for the hound to sniff. "Quiet boy quiet. Go get it! Find the rabbit!"

Almost instantly the dog broke into a sprint across the stretch of grass that lined the thicket they headed for. And in turn the hunter went after him. Though he couldn't even attempt to be as fast as his hound, Rae sprinted as fast as his legs would carry him. He hopped and leapt over stones and rocks, sometimes stumbling a little, once even snagging his hip on a low rise bush. Still he kept the hound in sight as the beast tracked a particularly large rabbit.

But the prey did not budge. As the hunting dog came bolting towards it with bared teeth it stayed and stared at him quietly. At first Raeyn thought nothing of it but as he came catching up to what now was a stand off between the rabbit and his dog, he soon began realising something was extremely off. He drew an arrow and pulled back the bow string.

Ru slowed down to a trot just metres away. His ears and nose zoned in on the creature as it lowered itself closer to the rocky ground. It's cute little button nose twitched. Raeyn watched as Ru approached closer and closer, snarling and trying to intimidate the rodent, but to no avail. It's behaviour was so odd that calling the dog back momentarily went though Raeyn's mind.

It was too late however and in a shred of a second the hound lunged toward's it's prey as it rushed to flee, kicking it's legs and stomping the ground, catching Ru in the jaw and halting him in his step. The hound got dazed, disoriented. The force of the kick propelling the rabbit well away from the dog.

Seeing his companion abandon the pursuit, Raeyn instinctively bolted after the rodent. At the same time he raised the bow and rotated it diagonally so that the arrow rested in the crevice between his finger and the wood as he pulled back the string. His steps too came to a halt. His body came closer to the ground, his eyes locked on the white tail of the creature hopping away in between long grasses and bushes. Raeyn's teeth gritted. His breath stopped in that final moment on concentration during which he aimed and released the arrow.

Perhaps it was the exhaustion of the run or the adrenaline of the moment but Raeyn could have sworn he heard his own heartbeat in his ears as his eyes trailed after the arrow flying though the air and into the ground, missing the rodent completely. A curse escaped his lips. Only moments later the white cotton tail finally disappeared from view beneath a woody bush in the distance. This was it! There must be a rabbit hole there he thought as he ran forwards, retrieving the arrow along the way and whistling for Ru to follow.
Last edited by Raeyn on June 4th, 2018, 2:51 pm, edited 2 times in total.
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A dog needs to eat

Postby Raeyn on June 3rd, 2018, 7:10 pm

The rodent was long gone but had unintentionally lead the hunter exactly where he wanted to be. He collapsed to his knees, panting heavily, drawing as much air into his lungs as possible to fight off the stitch between his ribs from all that running, and started to dig through twigs in the bushes. It took a few minutes but at last he found it, a small hole right by the trunk of the bush, hidden so well that he'd never have spotted it had the rabbit not given the game away. This was the entrance to the warren.

Raeyn made a judgement call. He was certain that by the time he made it to the rabbit hole, the creature would have been long gone down the tunnels and so it was safe to assume it would be abandoned due to his presence. Just to make sure he rubbed dirt and moss on his hands to mask the smell of man and he pulled out a tiny snare trap from his back pack. Het set it up neatly around the entrance and hammered the stake it was attached to into the nearest bit of soil firm enough to withstand the struggles of a dying animal. Just to be sure, he lugged over the heaviest rock he could find on hand to cover it. And as a finishing touch he dowsed the entrance to the warren with some rabbit pheromone. The trap wasn't perfect but it was the best he could manage.

After that he left as quickly as he came. It was important that his presence wasn't noticed by any other rabbits otherwise the trap was sure not to work. He was risking it, but the risk was worth the prospect of catching a rabbit as big as the one he chased down all the way here.

Another whistle signalled for Ru to follow.

The hunter kept his eyes open for any more signs of rabbits in the undergrowth. They moved low in the grasses, slow, bow drawn with a fresh arrow knocked on. Tracks would evade his eyes, until eventually he'd come across some fresh droppings. It was a sign there were more warrens close.

"Where's the rabbit, boy?" he whispered to the dog who sneaked a short distance ahead. While Ru moved far more stealthily than Raeyn could manage, Raeyn attempted to make every foot step as slow, calculated and quiet as possible. Standing only where his shoes could be muffled by dirt or grass which was much easier done on grassland than rocks. Sometimes he'd slip a little or made an unintentional noise that spooked a bird or two. Still no sign of rabbits. He did however spot another patch of droppings where Ru once again caught the scent of pray.

"Quietly." Rae whispered, watching his dog wind around grasses, following scents. One lead to another warren. One was a lost track but finally, after a wait that tested both their patiences, another white tail was spotted in the distance.

From behind the bush where he hid, Raeyn saw two large male rabbits in the open, engaged in a vicious fight. Fur was flung, feet stomped the ground and teeth bit. He tested the wind, making sure it wasn't blowing his scent towards the rodents.

It was the perfect opportunity. "Stay boy!" he hissed, readying his bow to shoot.

The tip of the arrow followed from left to right, after the rabbits as they chased each other around and clashed in combat. He took his time, steadied his breath once more until it was fluid and predictable and his heart beat slowed. Calmly he took aim just in front of the rabbit's nose, predicting it's path of movement to make up for the travel distance between hunter and prey. He then raised the tip a little, calculating the arrow's travel curve, making up for the direction of the wind. It was all a calculation in his head, a game of prediction. In a matter of moments he needed to outsmart the rabbit that had become just another moving target. Rae's breath stopped and the arrow was released.
Last edited by Raeyn on June 4th, 2018, 3:09 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Moving targets

Postby Raeyn on June 3rd, 2018, 7:26 pm

Once more the hunter missed his mark as the arrow hit a rock and shattered on impact. The rabbits broke into sprint and Ru sprang into pursuit but to no avail. The hunt wasn't going quite as well as he had hoped and the mid day sun was quickly approaching.

Frustrated with himself, Raeyn finally abandoned the rabbit hunt. He and Ru descended lower into the trees where familiar wood and bark would better camouflage their presence. There he spent some time looking around as they walked, trying to find anything to suggest animal presence. Tracks, paw prints, anything that his eyes could pick out. He was far from a competent tracker however and thus a lot was missed by his eyes. In fact they had wandered around for quite some time until they came upon familiar trees.

Upon closer inspection Rae would find acorns between leaves, some even half eaten and so he set up two more traps. One was another tiny snare attached to a stake that he hammered and secured at the foot of a tree, laying some small leaves to hide it's presence. Hopefully a squirrel would wander into it's doom once he left.

Another, larger small animal snare, he placed at the foot of another tree a short walk away. There was a wild beehive up in it's branches. The perfect bait for a hungry omnivore. Hurling the rope over a branch he secured it to the tree itself and double checked the knot work to make sure it wouldn't come loose to a struggling prey. Once again he covered the slipknot in small leaves and dirt, abandoning the site soon after, so as to not startle possible prey.

Once that was completed it was finally time for Raeyn and the dog to settle down for a midday rest and leftover breakfast he had brought along. Above them the wind whispered in the branches of trees, humming a soft summer lullaby.
Last edited by Raeyn on June 4th, 2018, 3:42 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Raeyn
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Moving targets

Postby Raeyn on June 3rd, 2018, 7:57 pm

Later that day the duo ventured into the warren ground once more, banishing the earlier ordeal with the aggressive rabbits from memory. It must have just been a freak occurrence. Perhaps it was the aura of summer driving the rodents crazy. Although Raeyn had been hunting for long enough to know that not to be the case, he made excuses for their odd behaviour anyway.

Once again he began stalking through the grass, trying to move as silently as possible despite his lack of proficiency in doing so. Often he messed up, scaring away potential prey, with with his dog at his side obeying quietly spoken commands, Raeyn's determination knew no boundaries.

By late noon he managed to shoot down two rabbits, albeit with more difficulty than usual. Attaching their small limp bodies to his belt, he treaded further along, further away from the path that got his there. The wind had changed unfavourably which made the hunt even more difficult and frustrating as most of the prey fled the moment it smelled him and Ru coming, sometime before he even spotted it. Scent marking bushes and stones with what was left of his rabbit scent vial did not seem to help.

In the next hour the dog managed to chase down one more rabbit and break it's little neck with his sharp teeth.

Exhaustion began drawing upon them with haste however and soon Raeyn's muscles started to ache from the miles he walked and the number of times he had drawn the bow string. He didn't want to risk the walk back to Lhavit in the dark but for his own sanity and the welfare of the dog it was time for a rest.

And so Raeyn dug a small ring in the dirt, freeing it from leaves and twigs and anything else flammable. He lined the diameter with rocks he found on hand and perched a bundle of twigs one on top of another in the centre and using the flint and steel he started a fire.
Last edited by Raeyn on June 4th, 2018, 3:58 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Moving targets

Postby Raeyn on June 4th, 2018, 9:10 am

There was nothing pleasant about the task of skinning and gutting an animal. Then again the hunter could not afford a weak stomach when it came to his livelihood. And so he began the arduous task of slitting the flesh of a dead rabbit at all it's four paws and pulling it back, cutting away with his hunter's knife as he did to take the fur off in a few large chunks. He had yet to perfect doing it all in one go. After removing the fur which he could later sell, he rinsed it thoroughly and salted the fleshy side to preserve it better and dry it out.

And after gutting it as quickly as possible, Raeyn sharpened a long stick and lodged it between the animal's ribs before putting it on the fire. He petted the dog that laid beside him as they waited for the meat to cook, watching the embers dance and flare. For the first time in the day he allowed his body and eyes to rest.
Last edited by Raeyn on June 4th, 2018, 4:03 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Raeyn
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Moving targets

Postby Raeyn on June 4th, 2018, 9:38 am

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The colour of the sky did not bode well. After he finished cleaning up the makeshift camp and gathered his supplies, the tree line lit up with orange and red hues. The sun was no longer visible. Had he miscalculated how long he'd spent chasing after rabbits? Or perhaps they had ventured out farther than he realised? No that couldn't be! He recognised this part of the Unforgiving. It was a common place for him to hunt.

There was simply no hope for the hunter to return to Lhavit before Leth's stars would light up the sky. For the first time in a while a nervous feeling churned in his gut.

Suddenly there was a creek in the undergrowth. Quiet and muffled as it was, Ru's ears picked it up straight away and the dog's cinnamon head followed in the sound's direction. But instead of barking aggressively and beginning to stalk as was his usual reaction, the sound that came from the hound was instead a high pitched whine. An alarm. Something was very very wrong.

Feeling his heart in his throat, Rae snatched his backpack from the ground and slung it over his shoulder. His other hand already grasped an arrow from his belt, knocked it on the bow string and aimed. His eyes scanned the grasses around but saw nothing.

Ru's ears lay flat along his coat and the whining turned to barking as if he was trying to scare something off. Part from fear, part to protect his master at all costs, he growled and snarled but would not go any closer to whatever it was that he sniffed out in the undergrowth.

Questions raced through the hunter's mind. How far away was it? Surely if it was close enough for the hound to not dare go any closer, it couldn't be far at all but no matter how much Raeyne squinted his eyes and tried to zone in on the direction of the barking, he could not make out anything but grass and twigs. Logically, if it was this close and he couldn't see it then it surely shouldn't be very big. Right?

Rae's arms trembled as he felt the strain of the draw weight of his bow. He couldn't hold the draw much longer and then suddenly there it was, a large rabbit hopping closer to the hunter nonchalantly as if to test him. For a second Rae hesitated as if to not believe his own eyes before lowering the bow. This creature had given him such a scare. This exact creature had frightened a dog three times it's size. That surely couldn't be.
Last edited by Raeyn on June 4th, 2018, 4:13 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Raeyn
...and the Wind Chicken
 
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Moving targets

Postby Raeyn on June 4th, 2018, 9:53 am

The snarling and the howling did not cease however. If anything it only became louder and more desperate. Ru leapt towards his master, coming between him and the fearless rabbit only to quickly duck behind him as the creature came closer. In the light of the setting sun it seemed no different. There were no immediately visible scars or wounds on it that Raeyn could spot. No signs of rabies or any other illness. It's coat was thick and luscious. The only oddity was that instead of running at the sight of the hunters it inched closer and closer, slowly, snuffing at the air around them.

Perhaps it was blind. It was an answer that made zero sense as he knew rodents mostly relied on their ears and nose to avoid predators but at least it was some answer.

Alas, barely an arms stretch away from Rae, the rodent thumped it's feet and bolted back into the bushes. Instinctively Raeyn followed with the reluctant Ru behind him.

It was far too late to go check the snares. Soon he would have to start making his way towards the safety Lhavit but perhaps he could hunt down just one more critter. That he counted on.

The rabbit's behaviour was odder by the minute. It would leap and dash away from the hunter and then stop, watching for him to catch up. Panting, he pursued the creature with his bow at a ready. They dashed and sprang in this game of cat and mouse across the grassy stretch, ducked between bushes and around trees until Lhavit was no longer in sight.

Raeyn's lungs were in his throat. A stitch ached in between his ribs from the exhaustion of pursuit and his brow was plastered in sweat. And as he lost sight of the feral rodent one last time he looked around, realising that he had gone much farther than he ever had before and perhaps now, he was well and truly lost.
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Raeyn
...and the Wind Chicken
 
Posts: 343
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Joined roleplay: May 24th, 2018, 11:35 pm
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Moving targets

Postby Madeira Craven on June 8th, 2018, 9:50 pm

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Grades Awarded!

Don't forget to edit/delete your grade request!


Raeyn

Skills
  • Observation: 5xp
  • Socialization: 1xp
  • Cooking: 2xp
  • Land Navigation: 2xp
  • Tracking: 5xp
  • Wilderness Survival (forest): 2xp
  • Hunting: 4xp
  • Animal Husbandry: 3xp
  • Running: 2xp
  • Weapon- shortbow: 2xp
  • Endurance: 4xp
  • Trapping: 2xp
  • Stealth: 2xp
  • Butchering: 1xp
  • Logic: 1xp

Lores
  • Cooking: browning chicken over a fire
  • Tracking: following prey to find predators
  • Wilderness Survival: marking your path
  • Running: dealing with a stitch
  • Tracking: finding a rabbit warren
  • Trapping: laying snares
  • Shortbow: calculating wind resistance
  • Trapping: squirrel trap
  • Wilderness Survival: building a fire
  • Butchering: skinning a rabbit
  • Lore of the strange phenomena in the Unforgiving

Awards & Retribution


Notes
What an action packed thread! I love seeing people make use of city plots in their solos.

If you have any questions/concerns about your grade don't hesitate to PM me :)
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