Solo Feline Frolics

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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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Feline Frolics

Postby Oralie on April 10th, 2022, 8:32 pm

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14 Spring, 522


Oralie sat quietly on the open deck of the home of Randal Zor. She was watching the jungle, her golden eyes roaming over the vast expanse of green that stretched away from the Founder’s home. Sometimes her interest would be caught by a brightly coloured bird taking flight over the treetops and she would watch until it dipped beneath the canopy again. She liked it up on the deck in the trees. It made her feel closer to the jungle. Of course she wanted to be able to explore the place on her own, on the ground and in the trees as her feline self, but she didn’t know enough about the jungle to be able to stay safe yet. Just because she could take the form of a jungle cat did not mean her brain and the things that she knew changed too.

The Kelvic was not alone on the deck, though her current company was not the Founder. It was a being made of shadows. It hovered a few arm lengths away, watching her with unblinking silvery eyes. It had been her constant, though unwanted, companion since the first day of the season. She did not know why, but since it didn’t do anything but follow her silently, she had learned to mostly live with the permanent feeling of wrongness that emanated from the thing.

She turned her head as footsteps approached, smiling as Randal came into her view. He stopped in the doorway, dressed for the jungle. “Ready to go?” Oralie nodded and stood to follow him. In contrast, she was not dressed for an excursion, though that is what the pair were doing. Oralie had on only a dress; a simple yellow and cream one, her feet were bare and her hair was unbound. The pair headed down to the ground level of the carpenter's expansive home, the shadow trailing silently behind them. When they reached it, Randal waited expectantly by the front door.

Oralie quickly shimmied out of her dress, handing the item to Randal. As soon as he had taken it from her, tiny lights appeared around her body until they completely swallowed her form. No more than a tick later, an ocelot was stood in her place. The Founder crouched to look at her, a smile on his face. “Very cute.” Oralie bared her teeth in a silent hiss. Randal chuckled and she butted her head gently onto his knee. Even though she couldn’t speak in her current form, they were still able to joke with each other in a different way.

Randal folded Oralie’s dress neatly and placed it into his waiting backpack before standing and securing it onto his back. He then headed out the door, ducking slightly so as not to hit his newly grown horns on the top of the frame. The Founder’s curse was a very visible one, unlike her own, and he was still changing every day. It had only been a handful of days since the Tenday and the horns were longer again and his eyes had lightened to almost the same shade as her own.

The pair of them headed across the Commons. Oralie had not yet taken in the main part of the settlement through her fully feline eyes yet, and she could see things much clearer than usual. Not just people wandering in the distance, but she could see things like the tiny insects that ran around all over the place. There were a couple of gulls too a little way off and she watched them intently, a strange desire to chase them flickering through her. It was easy enough to brush the feeling away, but she wondered if she would become more instinctually feline the more time she spent as a cat. If she never again shifted to human, would she become an ocelot totally in mind as well as body? Oralie again realised how little she knew about her own race with a pang.
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Feline Frolics

Postby Oralie on April 11th, 2022, 9:15 am

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It did not take them long to reach the Banana Grove and they wove their way between the trees laden with yellow fruits. Randal reached up to pluck a banana off of one as they passed. He peeled it before offering it down to Oralie, most likely out of habit. She huffed loudly, her nose wrinkling at its smell. Usually she liked bananas, but to a feline they were not a delicacy. She heard the man chuckle before the fruit quickly disappeared from her view.

They were not stopping in the Grove, merely passing through. Their objective today was to find a good spot for Oralie to practice climbing, and perhaps running, in the jungle as an ocelot.

The jungle quickly enveloped them in a world of green that was both quiet and loud at the same time. The sounds of Syka grew soft, the sea little more than a whisper past the trees. The sounds of the jungle however were clearer now. There was life everywhere and it all made noises. Oralie could hear monkeys chattering to each other, birds calling and even the insects buzzing, adding a permanent humming to the area.

Her luminous eyes could see much deeper into the jungle than her human ones could. She could see individual leaves on plants stretching far back along the faint trail they were following. It was nice too, to feel the ground here beneath her paws. The soil was almost springy, a testament to how nutritious the jungle loam was.

The pair walked in companionable silence for a short while, Oralie winding her way along the trail in front of Randal. She glanced around once to see the shadow being drifting behind the man quietly. Turning forwards again, an anomaly in the ground at the side of the trail caught Oralie’s attention and she paused to inspect it.

There was something half-buried in the soil, and the Kelvic pawed at it until Randal gently nudged her aside. The man quickly uncovered a backpack, and Oralie took the handle in her mouth and pulled it out from the remaining soil. It didn’t weigh much at all suggesting it was likely empty. empty but it looked like it was in good condition, the brown leather free of rips. The carpenter opened the bag, surprise lighting his features as he saw what was inside. He glanced at Oralie before upending it, spilling the contents right onto the jungle floor.

Oralie looked at them, head tilted to one side. There were a whole lot of stones and a large leather pouch. Randal smiled at her curious pose. “I think it’s a backpack of voiding. We’ve found a few of them around here. It felt empty right? Light?” Oralie huffed a nod. “It can hold as much as you want to put inside it, so long as it fits through the opening.” The man opened the pouch and the pair saw handfuls of golden mizas nestled inside. With a raised eyebrow he quietly tied the pouch back up and dropped it into the empty backpack before slinging it over a shoulder. “Lead on.” He smiled at her, and Oralie paused for a tick before turning back to the trail.
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Feline Frolics

Postby Oralie on April 11th, 2022, 9:16 am

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It wasn’t long before Randal called out from behind her. “Oralie.” The Kelvic paused, paw hovering above the ground and she turned her head to look back at him. Her eyes briefly flickered as she glanced over his shoulder at the shadow before they returned to his face. The carpenter motioned to a tree off to one side of the trail. It had fallen, but not to the ground. Instead it had caught in the branches of another tree and gotten stuck. She studied it. To a regular human it would just appear as it seemed - a fallen tree. But to her it was a ramp up into the canopy.

She looked at Randal again and the man nodded. Oralie hesitated before moving. She knew that her feline body would be able to do what she was going to ask of it, but her very human brain was still nervous.

She sprang forwards, leaping lightly over the ground and onto the leaning trunk. Her claws instinctively slid from their sheaths to offer her grip on the sloped surface and her tail flicked out as a counterbalance. It was an easy scramble to the top of the tree where it sat cradled in the branches of its companion.

Once there, Oralie jumped onto a thick limb of the standing tree that held itself parallel to the ground. She stepped along it carefully before folding her haunches beneath her into a seated position. Her tail hung below the branch, curling underneath it and she peered down at Randal. Curiously, the shadow being had stayed down below with the man.

The Founder grinned up at her. “You look like you belong up there.” He gestured an ‘after you’, indicating that she should continue on and move off amongst the trees. Oralie rose and stepped lightly along the branch again. Her human brain rebelled still, though it was getting easier to let her feline instincts take over. While she would be nervous about being up so high on two legs, her four-legged form felt stable and secure up in the branches.

She swept her golden gaze over the canopy, quickly studying the trees from this new vantage point. From down on the trail below, she would never have been able to see just how interconnected everything was. Branches overlapped each other from practically every tree, and the ones that didn’t were more than close enough that a single step was all that was needed to bridge the gap. She could see further ahead up here than she had been able to down on the trail, purely because the view was far less obstructed.

With a flick of her long tail, Oralie trotted to the end of the branch and onto one that intersected it without pausing. She continued along in the same manner for a chime or so, traversing through another few trees with relative ease. The branches were thick enough that she suspected Randal could quite easily join her up in the canopy if he wanted to. She peered back down to the trail to see him picking his way along, stepping carefully over roots and moving foliage out of his way with his long knife.
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Feline Frolics

Postby Oralie on April 11th, 2022, 9:17 am

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Once he had caught up with her she headed off again. Oralie moved in a zig-zag sort of pattern, going back and forth over the trail below. She decided to move a little faster, her pace something more akin to a trot than just quick walking. This way it was much easier to lightly hop from branch to branch when one was lower or higher, or when they didn’t quite overlap.

After another handful of chimes she stopped again until Randal was below her once more. The shadow was able to keep up much better, for it could simply drift through foliage or trees that were in its way. It was interesting that it had decided to keep to the ground though, rather than follow her up into the canopy.

She decided to try getting down from the tree now, so that she could have a go at climbing properly without using a ramp. She moved along the branch she was on back to the thick trunk that held the tree upright and looked down it. Instinctively, she knew that she shouldn’t try to go down it head first. Her claws would not be able to grip that way. Instead she gripped the trunk between her forepaws and then slid the rest of herself off the branch until she could plant her back feet on the trunk too. Now she was stuck to the tree like a barnacle, facing up towards the canopy. Slowly she made her way down backwards, dropping her back paws down, gripping and then letting go with her front paws. It didn’t take her too long, and she was soon down on the ground with Randal again.

The Founder was chuckling to himself, and Oralie fixed her large eyes on him curiously. He grinned at her. “You looked like a monkey coming down then.” The Kelvic huffed a half-growl in her throat, trying to convey amusement through her feline sounds. She gently butted his knee with her head before turning and moving off down the trail again. It really was so much easier to move through the jungle as an ocelot. Her body naturally wove around things without her thinking about it, her paws never caught to trip her on roots and stones. Even if something did touch her, her fur coat protected her from it.

After a short time, she wanted to get back up in the canopy again. They came to a spot where the trail below widened, and if Oralie rotated her ears she could hear the sounds of running water somewhere nearby. They must have joined a game trail somewhere a little way back. She examined a large tree to her right and looked pointedly at Randal and then back to the tree, trying to indicate that he should join her.
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Oralie
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Feline Frolics

Postby Oralie on April 11th, 2022, 9:20 am

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Oralie bunched her haunches, her muscles coiling in anticipation for a jump. She sprang, putting herself a good way up the tree, clinging to its bark with her claws. Climbing up was then just the opposite of climbing down, as it turned out. She let go with her front paws and reached upwards at the same time as pushing up with her back paws. The claws dug into the bark again and she tucked her back legs close under her body to give her maximum reach potential for the next section. It took her less than a chime to quickly spring her way up the trunk and seat herself neatly on a branch.

Below, Randal had taken a pause to slide his backpack off and pull out a waterskin. Oralie decided to have a scout around instead of waiting for him to drink. She rose and trotted along the branch before leaping lightly onto the next. She swept her gaze across the canopy and made a decision on her direction before jumping over a small gap into an adjacent tree. What she hadn’t seen was that there was already an occupant, hunched tight against the trunk in the crook of the branch.

The occupant shrieked and dove at Oralie, who spun on the branch to face it. The creature came at her with a flurry of limbs and she instinctively swiped at it to keep it from hurting her. Her human brain realised what was happening too late for her to change her actions and as she hit the animal its feet slipped and it tumbled off the branch and onto the ground below.

A shout from Randal snapped the Kelvic back to reality, and she raced to the trunk and climbed her way down to the ground. The carpenter had already moved over to see the creature, and Oralie cautiously approached to see him knelt over a monkey. Its fur was littered with wounds and the animal was whining pitifully. Twinkling lights enveloped Oralie’s feline body and then she was kneeling in her human form, hands over her mouth. “I didn’t mean to…”

Randal looked sharply at her. “Oralie, you can’t be unclothed out here, change back.” She ignored the man, staring at the poor monkey. “Oralie.” He put a hand on her shoulder to redirect her attention. “You didn’t do all of that to it. It’s clearly been ostracised from its troupe. The wounds are from other monkeys. It’s weak, so even just a small tap might have knocked it from the tree. It’s not your fault, okay?” Oralie nodded slowly, then hissed through her teeth as a sharp but small pain stabbed her thigh. She slapped the offending bug away before changing back into her ocelot form.

The Founder took a moment to look from Oralie to the monkey and back again. The Kelvic folded her haunches, sitting on the trail and curling her tail around herself. Randal sighed and rolled his eyes. “Only because I can’t stand to see you feel guilty for it.” He went to his backpack and pulled out a shirt, bundling the weak creature into it. It barely struggled as the man wrapped it tightly against himself in a sling, close enough to his body that the monkey would be hard pressed to hurt itself or Randal if it wanted out. The backpacks went on again, and together the pair turned and headed back along the trail to the settlement.


thread wc: 2779
ooc note: claimed challenge prize of 500gm and Syka seasonal challenge ticket item (backpack of voiding)
User avatar
Oralie
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Posts: 194
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Joined roleplay: November 16th, 2021, 3:38 pm
Race: Kelvic
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