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Ixzo's entrance to Sunberth, where she meets Anja

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A lawless town of anarchists, built on the ruins of an ancient mining city. [Lore]

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Welcome to the Sun

Postby Ixzo on March 21st, 2019, 12:22 am

Fatigue was tearing at Ixzo’s limbs. She was not stranger to hard work, but even one as she had to rest as some point. Her awareness of the world about her became fuzzy as she focused on this Drykas, listening to his prayer carefully and watching him examine the body. At this point her mind was fuzzy and numb and the shock of being reacquainted with society in such a harsh manor was souring her hope to retain connection to humanity. Something inside of her wanted to turn away, to run back into the wilderness and risk her life to try and make it back to Cyphrus, back to her love…

And then her soul rang with the pain of the faded bond. She couldn’t know exactly what had happened, but the last she had felt of Rufio was a sense of loss, of giving up. Perhaps the Drykas had imagined her dead, perhaps she had truly wandered too far away from the woman, but now she was alone again. Alone and her only connection was this strange man who owed her nothing, but who she sought comfort in because his culture was familiar to her. Nervous, Ixzo clutched at the jacket on her shoulders, rising with him and nodding at his words as if she knew what the dustbed was, or why burying was important. The Drykas burned their dead, the Myrians did too, the idea of burying a dead body seemed… unsanitary. But Ixzo wasn’t thinking too hard about that, happy to surrender the decision making to this strange son of death, as this was his area of expertise.

It was once they started walking that she realized he would not let her do that. “I know how he died,” Anja said. “Dira told me. I think you know too. Can you remember?”

Ixzo looked at him blanked, shaking her head before she really had time to think through it. The words ‘I found him like that’ began to form in her head, although something told her that wasn’t true. She did find him, but he wasn’t like that. Silver eyes gleaned back towards the corpse that hung from Maisa’s rear, and Ixzo appraised the bloodied claw marks on his bare chest where she had removed his shirt. One finger penned at his knife which was now hers and it took her a few chimes before she could muster up an answer for the patient Drykas. ”He was attacked.” She whispered, the words nagging something in her fuzzy, fatigued, and half-mad mind. She had been isolated too long, she had stopped seeing humans for what they were. She had never liked the taste of human, they were not fat enough and had too much bone for her teeth to pick around. As a young lion she had attempted it, joining the hunting parties that secured the Taloban borders against stealing colonizing humans. If they ventured too near, they were anyone’s game. But this was different. This boy had not invaded her territory; he had merely gotten in her way… but how? Her mind could not dredge up the events of the few hours past, but she remembered she was hunting something else when he came into view. ”He got in my way.” Not guilty. She said again, still not entirely grasping what her words had meant. Years of living with the Drykas had taught her to treat humans as precious, although her Myrian roots hadn’t cared and her Kelvic nature would hunt anything that attracted her to it.

And then it hit her. ”I was hunting… a hog. He got in my way. No… he didn’t. He was hunting it too, and I was… annoyed.” Irritated. She slashed the Pavi sign in the air, fumbling through the fatigue and slight fracturing of sanity to find the proper timeline. ”He shot at me, and missed… so I killed him.” Her heart sank as the realization dawned on her that she had murdered a child in cold blood. Well, not entirely in cold blood, but it had been preventable. He had missed, she was far more comfortable in the wilderness than he was, she could have just walked away. But in that moment she had forgotten her humanity. She had spent too much time as a lion, and she had not made the correct decision. At the moment her mind could not scramble to justify it. According to her devotion to Myri, any who tried her own life of those of her family were worthy of death. According to her devotion to Priskil, all children had hope, and was this boy not a child? Had she sought the battle goddess instead of her patron mother for her irritation rather than to let him live and learn his lesson.

Her voice shrank into a small squeak and she whispered in Myrian. ”I’m sorry.” Forgetting she may be getting too close to a horse, she reached for the boy’s forehead to graze it with her finger tips, as if it would make her words mean more. As if it would take back her brutal mistake.

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Postby Anja Nightwatcher on April 16th, 2019, 6:27 pm

A sigh parted Anja's lips. There was at least as much relief there as there was melancholy. Ixzo was still not quite right, but the woman's madness was only stretching so far, and she had at least come round to acknowledge the act of ending this boy's life.

“Long time in the wilderness,” Anja told her sympathetically. He reached out to gently touch her shoulder and she caressed the boy's cold face. Maisa started a bit as the kelvic reached out, but the strider held her ground. “Was very hungry, was defending self,” Anja told her. He could see the remorse there, and honestly, the man doubted she had been anywhere in her right mind when she attacked him. Even if she had, who was he to judge? He was still learning the intricacies of kelvic behavior, those thin threads that divided them between wild animals and intelligent, thinking beings. Animals hunted without thought to the moralities of killing, and they didn't always hunt to eat either. She might feel remorse for this, but Anja could hardly blame her. This killing had not been done out of cruelty and he had died swiftly.

“He died fast,” Anja told her as way of comfort. “No suffering.”

The pair's path lead them through the cold, winding, impersonal streets. The pair's unusual appearance drew eyes; a bloody near naked woman, and a strange dark haired man, followed by a pale white horse carrying a corpse. The gazers kept their distance. Perhaps wisely, considering Ixzo's volatile nature. Much of the march proceeded in silence, giving Anja some time to mull over his thoughts. When one started categorizing killers, the edges became a little blurry. At what point was murder wrong, and self defense right? Intent? Both ended up with the same result. He was sure before he had been marked that he had known where that line was, but now it was hard to see it.

Eventually, the pair's tracks led them up the hill to the Dust Bed. Anja had walked this path many times by now, but even so he still found himself sweating and breathing heavy. He more often rode Maisa here, and she was well used to the incline, hardly breathing heavy at all. When the incline finally straightened out, the rolling hills gave way to a dusty, dry, and desolate landscape of rocks and cliffs overlooking the sea. Anja sighed with relief, and patted his companion's hindquarters. Maisa snorted, but otherwise did not respond. Her dark eyes were scanning the Dust Bed and Anja's eyes followed her gaze.

“My employer is here,” Anja told Ixzo. “He will tell us where to bury this boy.”
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