A Couple of Beach Bums (Adelize)

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

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A Couple of Beach Bums (Adelize)

Postby Puk on September 6th, 2020, 1:54 am


Timestamp: Fall 18, 520

Puk had found comfort recently in hanging around near to the Saw Mill. He found himself wanting to learn more about the Ashtas that worked there. It still amazed him to see other animals working like that. Like people. They weren't working for Lars. They worked with Lars. He could see that much from the body languages, from hearing them communicate, seeing how they regard him, and vice versa. Lars was as much a part of the herd as any of the Ashtas.

And Puk found himself wanting that.

He sat there, on the beach just north of the saw mill, in his Tskana form, letting the waves splash over him as the tide began to come in. He found himself remembering each and every single time he'd see the other Tskana from the Ivory Tusk tribe. He always wanted to go over, talk to them, just be with others of his kind. But Grau refused it, more violently than anything else he desired.

Some seaweed washed up and over Puk's legs. He'd never seen seaweed before, and he startled backward a bit, thinking it was a bunch of snakes. But it didn't move. Puk sniffed at it, prodding at it with his trunk. It was squishy! Slimy! Smelled weird. He picked it up with his trunk, seeing how long it was. Dark green and brown. He began flailing it about, swinging it in circles, spraying salt water around.

After he finished playing with it, he stuck a bit of it in his mouth. Salty! Slimy and chewy. He chewed on it loudly, slurping it all up like a long piece of pasta. He loved it. He continued to sit there, eating up all of it that washed up to shore around him, having a good time all by himself, letting off trumpeting blasts from his trunk as he did.
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A Couple of Beach Bums (Adelize)

Postby Adeliz on September 12th, 2020, 2:51 pm

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Hate.

Ines had asked her not to, but Adeliz wasn’t listening to Ines right now. In fact, in the brief conversation that had ensued and resulted in a fallout of grand proportions, at least in Adeliz’ mind, Adeliz hadn’t truly heard many of the words her sister had to say. It wasn’t that she hadn’t heard them. She was just toI angry at the time to commit any of them to memory. All she recalled was Ines asking her not to hate the big elephant man.

Adeliz was not listening to Ines, but the request was reasonable. The man had done nothing but be present. He couldn’t have known what he was interfering with, and for some reason, that made Adeliz hate him all the more. She wanted a good reason to hate him, but he just wouldn’t give it to her.

So she went to see if he was really as not-bad as Ines said. Her sister had mentioned that he seemed to hang around the Saw Mill, and so Adeliz has let herself back into the world of the living by going to talk to the person she hated most at the moment. As she wandered down the beach, the ghost kept reminding herself she had no reason to hate him. The only problem was the more she reminded herself, the angrier she got and the more she hated him for it.

By the time Adeliz spotted him on the beach, she was raging enough to kill him, though for the life of her, she couldn’t figure out how to do it. She was in the middle of mulling over the possibilities when the big beast, still in his elephant form, suddenly started, stamping his massive feet in the surf. She watched him and realized he was watching something at his feet. His hesitant trunk reached down and prodded something, then picked it up and held it up to his face to inspect it. A happy trumpet escaped him as he swung it about.

A laugh escaped Adeliz.

She froze. That wasn’t what she wanted to do. He wasn’t supposed to elicit these sorts of responses from her. She was supposed to hate him, but the more she watched him, the more familiar he became. His antics were the same as those of the Ashta, each action just a little more pronounced and dramatic due to the significant difference in size.

Watching him made her... happy. Damn it, she hated him for that, but she laughed again. Admitting she would find no more about him by watching from a distance, she dematerialized and skittered unseen across the sand until she was resting within the seaweed that had washed up to shore.

Mist projected toward where the hands of her soul would be, and she placed her palms beneath the seaweed and pushed upward. Still soaked with briny water, it was heavier than Adeliz had expected, so lifting it was a monumental task. Slowly though, the brownish green mess lifted into the air until it was level with the Tskana’s eyes. It took him a moment to realize there was seaweed floating in front of him, but when he did his trumpeting stopped. His trunk reached up hesitantly and prodded at the levitating vegetation.

Adeliz’ materialization had never been smooth, and she sparked into being a body part at a time, first her head, then an arm, then her shoulders, then her chest. She stopped at her waist as the effort took too much concentration and she was still trying to hold the seaweed aloft for him.

A smile managed to materialize, but when she spoke, it came from her unmaterialized, left elbow. “Hi. We haven’t met yet, but you did meet my sister. Ines.”

Hopefully he had taken the weed, because she had lost what strength she had to hold it where it was. Adeliz dropped it. “I’m Adeliz. Ines says you came from where she came from.”

It was just one more thing to hate him for, that he could share a common past with Ines while all Adeliz had was the memories Ines had allowed her, but Ines has wanted her to be nice. Adeliz wasn’t listening to Ines, but she was listening to herself, and she said to give him a chance. She asked the nicest thing she could think to ask. “What was it like there?”
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A Couple of Beach Bums (Adelize)

Postby Puk on September 13th, 2020, 8:07 pm



Puk was mindlessly eating at the seaweed in his mirth, not even noticing that his trunk had followed along with a pile of it that began floating. He was busy looking out over the ocean. When his eyes finally did look to see the apparition aided levitating vegetation, he startled backwards a bit, a panicked trumpet escaping his trunk. There, beneath the seaweed, a woman appeared, piece by piece. And to Puk, this was horrifying!

The large elephant froze hoping whoever this was would leave him alone. And then she spoke to him, mentioning the name of the woman he first met when he arrived here in Syka. Ines. He remembered the small woman. She was the one whom he'd protected from the reckless, young Ashta. So this woman was family, and since he respected Ines, he must respect this woman too. Which he would've anyways, had he not be so thoroughly scared first.

He could see the ghost's face straining, and he just assumed it was because of the weight of the seaweed. He reached out and grasped the seaweed gently with his trunk, being extra careful so as to not possibly hurt her. He didn't know if ghosts could be hurt, but still, he did his best not to do so. He brought the seaweed to his mouth, chewing on it.

Adeliz was a pretty name, even if it was a bit long. She asked him questions, so in order to answer, he swallowed the offered seaweed. Then he shifted into his human form. Now he was twenty feet beneath the woman, sitting naked in the surf. He smiled up at the woman, not sure how if he should act differently around a ghost, so he decided to treat her like any other woman he'd met.

"Hello, Adeliz. I like your name, it is pretty. I am called Puk." He waited for her to come down to him. He didn't like to shout. It was rude. When she did, he answered her question about Taloba. "It was lonely for me. Ines is from the Ivory Tusk clan, surrounded by family and Tskana. I wasn't allowed to be around them or talk to them. They... Many of the Myrians there, are great warriors and hunters, and love to bathe themselves in blood and be mean and scary. I didn't like that part. But Taloba has lots of food, lots of fruit trees. I like fruit a lot." He paused, "I wish I could've gotten to know the other Tskana."

He was large, even when sitting. Big shoulders, big chested, big forehead, messy mop of curls. His smile was a bit pained as it was cast toward Adeliz, meekly asking in a whisper, "Does it hurt to be a ghost? Are you scared?" Weighing on his mind being confronted with a sort of living version of death was the fact that he had killed someone recently. Grau was dead because of him. And in spite of the confusing mixture of conflicting emotions he had about Grau, he hoped she wasn't suffering because of him. It was bad enough that he'd trampled her.

He would wait patiently for her to answer the question, or not. If she did, he'd wait until she finished talking entirely, but either way he asked another question later. "Are you hungry? Would you like some of this... stuff too? It's really tasty and fun to eat."

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A Couple of Beach Bums (Adelize)

Postby Adeliz on November 10th, 2020, 3:01 pm

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The powerful elephant turned into a powerful man, though he was much shorter than he’d initially been. It wasn’t an oddity or a shock to Adeliz. While she had been living, Ines has spoken to her of it, and when Ines had returned to her Kelvic self, she had shown off the shift, half in pride to impress her little sister and half in giddiness to be able to do it again. Some might have been startled by it, but Adeliz found it exotically beautiful. She swore she could watch her sister do nothing but change back and forth for eternity, and the act would never lose its wonder. The bi man was sitting naked in the gentle waves that lapped at the sand. He called up to her with his name and a compliment of hers.

Puk. It was short and simple, nothing like him if her limited introduction told her anything. The gentleness in his eyes spoke of complexities beyond what Adeliz experienced in most people. She had to stop and remind herself that Puk was not people, the same way Ines was not people, not in the way people tended to understand people. Of rourse, Puk was a person, but there was a part of him that understood things with a wisdom and a knowledge that people had lost. Instinct. A purer view. She drifted down to him.

Puk waited for her to come to him before he went on. When he did, he spoke of the life that Ines may have had there in Taloba, things that seemed vaguely true, things about Ines and her clan and what she may have experienced. Ines had spoken some of it, and Adeliz had learned some through vague shared memories. Occupying the same head, the same body, tended to do that to two people, but perspective changed how each one saw it. Still, Adeliz was proud of her sister- where she had come from and what she had made of herself.

But Puk’s recounting quickly showed that he had been ostracized. He spoke of Myrian culture, of blood and of war, of the frightening ruthlessness their people acted with, and Adeliz could tell that none of it spoke to him. Peace was in his nature, but he would defend others if he had to. Ines had told Adeliz how the big Tskana had reacted to the Ashta’s antics. Finally, something slipped out about his time there. “I wish I could’ve got to know the other Tskana.”

All at once, her heart, if she had one, broke for Puk. All he wanted was a herd, a family, a place to call his own with people who loved him and claimed him as much as he claimed them. Adeliz had that. Even dead, she had that. She had Ines She had a sister. Though life had taken much from her, including life itself, she still had more than many people did. She was claimed. She was loved. She had Ines. Puk? He had nobody.

Something burst inside Adeliz. Something broke and swelled and grew until she could deny it no longer. Whatever it was, this something was stronger than the rage she had felt only chimes earlier, fiercer than any hate she had harbored toward him. She didn’t know what it was or where it came from, but it made her hate him even more that his innocence made her feel this way.

No. Puk didn’t have no one. He had her. Resolutely, Adeliz swore in her heart that that he would always have her, and that even if he never had anyone else to call his family, she would claim him, and she would be sure that she was more than enough.

She was so lost in this thought she almost missed his next question, almost missed his sheepish concern. “Does it hurt to be a ghost? Are you scared?”

“Does it hurt?” She shook her head. “No. Not physically, anyway. I just kind of stopped being alive.”

It was true. Her ‘death’ had been different from most people’s.

“Am I scared?” Adeliz smiled at that question. “Always. Just not for me. I’m already dead. Life can’t do me any worse than what it’s already done. But the people I love are still living, and it terrifies me to think that they might die before their time, like me. But that’s what family is for. We take care of each other. We watch each other’s backs. We watch out for each other. You’ll see, Puk. Just stick with me and Ines. We’ll make sure to take care of you, too.”

Adeliz couldn’t be sure if he had caught the implications of that, but she had put it out there.

She went on. “If you stick with me and Ines, there will always be a good place for you at the Saw Mill. We can all take care of each other there while me make ourselves useful to the city. Stick with us, and you’ll be okay.”

Generously, Puk offered her a bite of the seaweed, but Adeliz could only laugh at that. “Fortunately, and unfortunately, I don’t need to eat as a ghost. I can’t eat, not the things people do.” She’d heard of things from the librarian but had yet to try them. “I’ve seen them use that to wrap food when they cook it though. I bet if we brought some back to the Commons, they’d appreciate it very much. Someone would make good use of it. What do you say?”

If he agreed, she’d let him gather some in whatever form he chose and then prattle to him as they wandered down the beach toward the center of the town.

“Did you know Ines is a Kelvic like you? Not like you, not an elephant, but a Kelvic still. She’s a bat. She’s kind of like the Myrians. She drinks blood, but it’s not because she’s mean. She just has to. It helps her to grow strong and healthy. What do Tskana eat? I know you said you liked the fruit trees in Taloba. We have plenty of those here. Crom’s favorite are mangos. Have you ever had a mango before? They were some of my favorite when I was living. Mangos. And cheese. Cheese isn’t a fruit…”
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