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GarouMUSH Forums • View topic - Earning their Scars (22 Feb 2012)

Earning their Scars (22 Feb 2012)

Roleplay Logs (or links to such) go here.

Earning their Scars (22 Feb 2012)

Postby Tyrnis » Mon Mar 05, 2012 3:14 am

In which Nik leads his three cubs into the Umbra and gets them into a bit of trouble. The cubs get their first taste of battle, and are given new deed-names.

GM: Jamethon

Cast of Characters
Nik ~Thunder’s-Heart~: Fostern Shadow Lord Ragabash; Tribal Elder
Alexandra (no Garou name): Shadow Lord Ahroun cub
Hayden ~Two-for-One~: Shadow Lord Philodox cub
Ky ~Bends-the-Rules~: Shadow Lord Ragabash cub

Moon: Waning New Moon (2% Full)
Weather: Unseasonably cold winter weather

The Scarred Forest (North of I-90)
The forest is thinner here than it is south of the highway, though it is still difficult to see for very far. Signs of human habitation break the stretch of woods every few miles; roads, paths, farms, and the occasional out-of-the-way home remind you that civilization is encroaching, though in this area, the battle is not yet decided. Hardwoods mix with towering firs and smaller trees, still concealing some of nature's hidden places from the nearby humans. Streams and small pools are scattered throughout the forest, some large enough to swim in, some small enough to freeze solid for most of the winter.
Fresh stumps dot the woods, and almost all of the trees still standing are disease-scarred around the bases of the trunk, some only superficially marked, some deeply wounded; not a few are dead.
Once hauntingly quiet and sparsely populated with wildlife, these woods have fully come alive again. The scents and sounds and glimpses of animals, birds, insects are now as rich here, among the scarred trees, as they are anywhere.
This region stretches almost 50 miles north from I-90 into the Sun Lakes area, where the disease that scarred the trees appears to have been at its worst.

Despite the weather, Nik insists that the cubs who could meet him at the Edgewood. Gathering them into lupus, he sets them all to running through the rain, letting off some steam and getting them more used to the four-legged travel they need to accomplish to trek across pack territory to the very north side. Before they reach the destination, Nik gives a howl to Ky to meet with them, shifting up to Crinos. ~How is the Mother's Tongue with the two of you?~ he asks, eyes mostly on Alexandra.

Nik doesn't have to wait too long for the absent cub's response. A quick howl rises from generally where the two visitor Shadow Lords are harboring. Rule Bender is coming.

Two-for-One's answer comes while still in lupus, a simple affirmative. Good. Her ears satellite toward the returned howl, posture tightening and tail twitching in sudden anxiety or irritation. A deep heave of breath forces her chest to barrel for a moment as she settles patiently (forced) next to her elder.

Alexandra has been practicing it with Two-for-One, but the noises are still difficult to make and understand. The Ahroun cub remains in lupus, at least for the time being, since communication in that form comes much more instinctively.

Thunder's-Heart's ear twitches at the howl, and the one green eye glint in amusement at the taken name. ~I will use small words,~ he promises. He draws from the sheath at his back one of his large, gleaming bowie knives, lowering it down to the cubs present. ~See your reflection?~ He asks as they wait.

Two-for-One gives a thoughtful look from elder to knife, a snort of breath her only reaction as she begins focusing on it. All concentration and effort on her part.

The Ahroun cub is a blend of nervousness and excitement at getting to put this particular lesson to use for the first time. She, too, stares intently at the blade.

Out of the brush, Bends-the-Rules appears, a slower pace than the run he obviously took to find the alpha and fellow cubs. His ears splay almost immediately, head ducking and tail giving a small wag as he joins the group.

Thunder's-Heart beckons Rulebender to join them. ~Step Sideways~ he explains to the young Ragabash. ~We go into the spirit realm.~ He tilts the blade to glint towards the other Shadow Lords, obviously waiting for them to go through before he does.

Bends-the-Rules looks to the other two cubs, considering them briefly before turning his attention onto his own reflection. His ears twist forward, head giving a very slight ear-to-shoulder tilt in thought. One ear twists off as though hearing something else, something elsewhere for a long moment before he pads forward. Slowly, cautiously, he approaches his own reflection, going nose first after a second of uncertainty.

Two-for-One flickers an ear again, frustration evident in the young wolf's posture. Tail twitches, paws shift, a low growl emanates from her throat as she works at the crossing. It takes time. Lordy it takes time. Time to the tune of a good five minutes before finally she seems to get a breakthrough and slips through the gauntlet.

While it might not be much comfort to the Philodox, at the very least she doesn't have to worry about the Ahroun cub making it look too easy. Alexandra doesn't seem to be having any better a time, although eventually she does begin to fade out as her transition begins.

Umbra: Scarred Forest (North of I-90)
The trees of this forest reach up to vault the Umbral sky like cathedral pillars, still and graceful, heart-achingly beautiful in any season, under any moon, regardless of the scars that mar almost every trunk. Every shadow is velvet, every color is a jewel.
The southern border of this scarred land is the Umbral representation of the highway - a bright, straight scar across a world of nuances and curves, along which runs a strange traffic. Near that edge, the signs of the disease-blight are not so bad, and the trees have mostly lived with only surface defacement. The farther north one goes, the deeper are the gouges wrapped around the trunks, the higher the number of dead and dying trees, until one reaches the northern border of the woods - the basin around the wide Lakes of the Sun, and here decay has set its oily rainbow signature on all sides; on small moons the husks of the dead trees provide shelter for petty spirits of corruption.
Past the highway to the south, the bawn flourishes, thicker and more lush than the northern woods.

Thunder's-Heart steps through himself, re-sheathing that knife. He takes stock of the cubs briefly before glancing about with interest. ~Been a while~ he comments to them, gesturing, eyes wide as he gazes about. ~That way is bad.~ He gestures North. ~That way is nice.~ He gestures south. ~Which way, cub pack?~ He seems to be grinning.

Bends-the-Rules's head lifts and turns toward Nik, regarding him until he gestures north then south. His head twists to the former and then the latter, thinking obviously before a look is turned to Alexandra and Hayden.

Two-for-One takes a moment to steady herself once through the gauntlet and to the spirit side. There's a long moment of awe before she seems to shake herself back to focus, and then she rolls up into Crinos and stands to her full height. ~You didn't tell us what task we have here.~

Alexandra stumbles a bit as she steps forward and appears in a new place, more than a little overwhelmed by the sheer sensation of this place, especially experiencing it with the heightened senses of her lupus form. She doesn't need to say a word to express her awe, her every movement screams it. Brought back to herself by Nik's question, she sniffs first in a general southerly direction, then to the north, as if she might get some insight into the question by so doing.

Thunder's-Heart's eyes flicker from cub to cub, finally settling on the one who asks the question. ~Which direction do you feel you would benefit most from?~ It's obvious the Alpha's not going to make this easy. ~Three little cubs, jumpin' on the bed....~ He cackles, and without another word begins to move north, his crinos form hunched into an ambling quadrupedal gait.

Bends-the-Rules huffs an opinion of sorts, if it neither agrees nor disagrees with the alpha. He follows the elder Ragabash's lead, turning northward himself. Though he doesn't stay alongside the other, nor does he wait for his fellow cubs to keep up, instead choosing to range ahead. With a skulking posture but a quick pace that has him zig-zagging out ahead of the others, ears swiveling and twisting to every sound.

Two-for-One gives a low, aggrivated throat-mumble at the decision. She watches as the new moon jaunts ahead, eyes narrowed on him. ~What is bad about this direction?~ she asks of the elder. A sudden flick of her head and a twist of ears pivots her attention to the distance, attention focused there for the moment.
Apparently the question was a rhetorical one, given that her elder starts to the north. The Ahroun cub seems perfectly content to follow his lead, however, following along not far behind the others. For the moment, at least, she doesn't voice any questions she may have, since Two-for-One's gets to the basics.

Thunder's-Heart swivels his head about to face Twofer. ~Second Tenant of the Litany~ He requests. ~As you remember it.~ He continues to lope along, confident despite his more-diminished-than-usual stature.

Bends-the-Rules pauses in mid-stride, staring due north while his ears twist straight forward. After a moment, his posture seems to ask 'Was that you' though he's quite obviously not questioning the others in the group. Once the question has been posed, he resumes moving, a little slower though no less intent on scouting ahead of the others.

~A cough? I heard it as well.~ Two for One continues the pace beside the elder. ~Combat the Wyrm.~ The answer is kept short and sweet as she focuses on listening in for more sounds.

Asking about that specific tenet of the Litany, on the other hand, Alexandra does not appear to assume is a rhetorical question. While she doesn't give any indication that she heard anything, lupine senses or no, she opts to begin shifting to her more powerful hispo form as a precaution.

Thunder's-Heart tilts his head, not following up on his answer, as if assuming that's all there needs to be said. His ears swivel forward at the sound, but his eyes are on the scout. He pauses and attains an upright stance once more, gesturing for the cubs to investigate while he tags along behind.

Bends-the-Rules doesn't fully pause this time, though his ears flick and twist as though hearing something again. His speed picks up a little, tail curling outward and up a fraction. He sets his nose to work, snuffling here and there, eyes keeping watch on what's around him as he tries to locate the source of the odd sound.

Two-for-One drops to Hispo then, snorting out another huff of breath. Her ears move to the sides and her nose follows, drawing in scents from their flanks while Bends-the-Rules paces off more quickly to the fore. Her only communication now is to Alexandra, ~Watch him.~ Her nose sticks out to the cub ahead of the group.

Alexandra lets out a low rumble of agreement with Two-for-One, trotting on ahead of the Fostern Ragabash, but essentially setting herself up as the midpoint of the cub formation. If the other two wish to scout, let them, she'll be ready to back either of them up if needed.

Thunder's-Heart hangs back, making it clear he wants little to do with what happens from now on unless he is truly needed. His scent fades and his form blurs, and he becomes a ghost in the umbra.

Bends-the-Rules doubles back to an apparently random spot, nose nearly pressing into the Umbral ground before he snorts. Here, he states without explanation before spiraling outward enough to determine a path wrought of smell and following it.

Two-for-One keeps her distance behind Bends-the-Rules, eyes on him but on their surroundings more. She moves with enough speed to not fall more than ten or twenty yards behind the Ahroun cub, but seems intent on taking a 'watch from the back' approach to this. She puts her nose to the air rather than the ground, trying to gauge scents.

Alexandra isn't ignoring the scents and sounds around her, but neither is she going out of her way to be attentive to them, instead dividing the majority of her focus between her two fellow cubs. She follows along behind the Ragabash a short distance, letting him follow whatever it is he's identified.

Bends-the-Rules' nose takes him less directly north, veering off a little eastern as well. Every so often he pauses for less than a beat, head twisting to look back at the other cubs. This way, he tells them before taking to the scent trail he's following once again.

Thunder's-Heart has not left, and indeed can vaguely be seen ambling after the trio, silent.

Two-for-One moves in the direction of the scouting cub but does not rush to join him at point. Satisfied for now with the scents on the umbral wind, she puts nose back to the ground and concentrates on them again. Her ears remaining ever vigilant in listening.

Alexandra keeps to her position a distance behind the Ragabash, keeping an eye on him for the most part, though every so often she looks back over her shoulder to verify with eyes as well as ears that the Philodox is well also.

After a while of traveling, led by Bends-the-Rules' nose, all can suddenly hear more clear and fully what only a few had heard hints of before. It is as if they crossed some threshold when the sounds of an animal's pitiful whining is heard nearby. Being the umbra, it could be on another planet, or right next to the Garou. However, if they can hear it, they should be able to reach it, right? And they seem to be good at heading towards it thus far! This sound grows in intensity and starts to be interrupted by other more disturbing sounds.

Punctuating the wrongness of that animal's audible distress is a racket of hacking, coughing, gurgling and violent retching. This sickness is evident enough from this distance, and it is showing no signs of improving or going away.

Thunder's-Heart begins to show a sort of concern in his gait. ~Sickness~ he hisses a growl. ~Is not something we can fight with tooth and claw.~ He does not turn, however, and instead peers at the actions of the cubs.

Bends-the-Rules' ears twist back when the alpha speaks, though his attention remains focused ahead, to the source of the hacking and retching. A ridge of fur rises, trailing down his spine as he relates he'll get closer. Close enough to see and report back. Without waiting for an answer, he darts forward until he's several more yards ahead, then lowers into a crouch, letting his nose as much as his ears let him know where the thing is while he tries to get close enough to see and make a circuit around it.

Alexandra stays back to allow the Ragabash to scout, though her ears perk up and slightly forward, listening for any sound that might indicate her fellow cub is danger and needs assistance.

The sounds are coming from ahead, definitely. There is a thick and impenetrable grouping of trees ahead that the group will have to circumnavigate to see the source of this wrongness... but whatever it is seems to be just on the other side.

Thunder's-Heart sticks close, circling from behind the little group to the left, edging around the source of the noise. His nose twitches, attempting to ascertain just what kind of sickness that might be and just how dangerous.

Two-for-One continues her pace toward the scout, but doesn't close the distance. ~If not with tooth and claws, then with tools we do not possess yet.~ A glance is cast toward the elder, just briefly, as she continues on.

Bends-the-Rules slips off to the trees, using them as a form of cover to get close to the creature while hopefully maintaining some stealth.

Alexandra thinks we'll find out if we need our claws and teeth soon enough. We can decide what to do then. With the trees providing some cover, the Ahroun doesn't mind advancing after the Ragabash so much, since she's got less reason to fear her comparative lack of stealth disrupting his scouting, though she continues to allow him a good lead.

A couple members of the group get a small glimpse of what they face, the rest must continue on not knowing just what lies ahead.

Thunder's-Heart cannot yet see what's beyond the copse of trees, and he snorts in frustration before he picks up the pace, flitting through the trees as he maneuvers to a better position to see both the cubs and their quarry.

Bends-the-Rules backs away carefully and angles to his right, keeping whatever he's found in the copse to his left and trying, still, to use the trees as cover. He's still trying to get a sense of the thing, size and possible 'what'.

Alexandra, not being close enough to see anything, simply moves in formation, waiting until Bends-the-Rules is ready to bring back his report.

Two-for-One trots up closer to Alexandra, stopping just as she reaches her with a snort. ~Running straight in is fool's work.~ She glances then toward the Ragabash. ~So is separating.~

Thunder's-Heart glances briefly back at Twofer's statement, hunkering down into Hispo. He pauses while he's still within eyesight, curious to see what she suggests.

The sounds continue to grow in vileness, like someone is wallowing in the most disgusting and wretch-inducing filth, yet won't stop.

Alexandra draws back her lips in a silent snarl. I am glad this thing does not smell as foul as it sounds. But we will pass around these trees eventually, with Bends-the-Rules in the lead and both us ready to support him if he is seen. Or do you think the pack should approach differently?

Bends-the-Rules adjustment and attempts to see more of the thing reveal this...

Beyond the thick copse of trees, Bends sees a small clearing in which is a tree whose bark has turned to ash grey and black just from being in the presense of some twisted version of a coyote spirit curled up next to it. This, is most definitely the source of the sounds.

The wyrm infested spirit is covered in pustules; also thin and mostly furless throughout with a pale green that casts a look of wrongness all over it.

It is eating a disgusting mass of mucousy and seemingly mostly-digested small animal spirit parts... the process of which is disrupted by the creature vomiting up what it has been eating with a sound like something between a hacking cough and a barely heard-- pleased chuckle that is a twisting of the laughing a hyena might give.

The yellow and green, mucousy, and quite noticably bloodfilled meal is then set into again by the tormented bane continually eating and throwing up its own version of 'stomach contents'. Even when vomited up, the disgusting mass remains connected to the coyote's mouth by that thick and vile mucus, like a tether with which the spirit refuses to let go of that which it must continue to devour over and over.

The grass and greenery that was once there, all lays dead and withered away around the scrawny looking spirit.

Nasty. Rule Bender's ears twist backward as he slowly works his way back, away from the creature and back into the safety of the copse growth. Still hoping to maintain his stealth and cover, he turns to find his way back to the other two cubs to bring news of what he'd found.

~We should wait and see what he discovers. Or. If he gets eaten.~ There's no humor or wit in Two-for-Ones words, just cool, detached, honesty. Her ears continue to prick and pivot as she waits, eyes intent and thoughtful on the problem at hand.

Alexandra snorts at the second part of Two-for-One's assessment, clearly not in agreement with that part of it. At the return and report from the Ragabash Cub, she shifts up to crinos, though remaining on all fours. ~So open. No sneaking close.~ She considers, then asks him, ~You fast? Let it see, lead back to us for attack? Or I go, lead to you?~

Thunder's-Heart watches, listens, and considers the cubs, deep in his own thoughts. There is also trepidation in his stance... no relaxation there.

Fast enough. Bends-the-Rules looks back to the hidden dog-thing, considering. Full moon should wait to receive, no good for darkmoons to play goalie. He looks back at Alexandra, ears twisted forward in anticipation of her answer. A look is even spared to Hayden for her thoughts.

Rule Bender does indeed manage to make it back to tell of what has been seen... then try as the cub might, the inexperience with this palce just can't be helped. There is a suddenly movement it seems, like the entire Umbral world is a ship on an ocean under Rule-Bender's feet (that no one else seems to experience) and what would have been a noiseless and safe final step, instead cracks down upon a perfectly placed branch that snaps right beneath the paw. The sound causes the coyote to Freak. The Fuck. Out.

The creature starts to spasm violently, having a massive seizure as it flails around on the ground and comes into view, looking like something out of The House On Haunted Hill (the remake). The tainted spirit ends up somehow on all four feet through the massive shuddering contracted movement, simultaenously vomiting up what looks like a large rabbit's skull... that moans out in horrible pain from within the mass of mucus, before it is snapped back up by the beast in a horrible appearing combination of licking and biting. It stares right at the gathered during this movement, though is too focused on reeating the too large for its mouth/throat skull to move... still, a large mass of mucus remains connected to the opening of the throat and hanging out of its mouth, containing several chewed and partially digested parts of small animal spirits, quivering in pain.

Two-for-One flicks an ear in serious concentration. ~Coyote. Not dog.~ She looks back to the new moon cub. ~This is important.~ The Hispo form of the half moon tenses at this point, ears on her tribemates, eyes on the wretching beast. A shiver from the half moon brings another snarl of frustration from her, and whatever is important about this bit of news is apparently not being shared. ~Thunder's Heart said sickness cannot be dealt with tooth and claw. Not fixed? Or not /dealt/ with?~

Alexandra eyes the creature, not only for its own movements, but also those of the creatures in its vomit. ~I attack, keep busy. Dark moon and half moon -- attack....sick food.~ She lets out a faint growl of frustration at her lack of vocabulary in the mother tongue -- who knew she'd need the word 'puke'? ~Food still moving. Free or kill. Either better. Then help.~

Thunder's-Heart winces in disgust at the sight of the thing writhing in pain and wallowing in its own wyrmy mess. He quietly thanks Gaia that it is a small victim, but knowing even the little ones can be Problematic, especially in the Umbra, he gets to his feet and moves back to the group, circling around to the back to keep the creature from splitting them up. He doesn't offer up his two cents on the matter, but he does look upon the spirit of the coyote with something that borders on pity.

Bends-the-Rules twists around and stares at the monster when it moves and flails. An ear angles toward the Philodox when she speaks, an eye roll offered at the correction. He doesn't respond otherwise, angling a look instead at Alexandra. He doesn't look like he quite agrees with her plan, watching her for a long moment before slipping off to flank the beast and whatever comes out of its mouth.

The Coyote-Bane ambles forward like one might think it would if they were looking at a classic zombie in Canis-form. It drags that mass along the ground which... burns at it with a sizzle as the creature moves. The dragging of the line of mucus coming from the beast's throat causes it to gag and vomit up a few small bones which are snapped up in mid-air before they can fall to the ground. It slowly approaches the Garou with a look of insane and wild hunger. "Must eat!" It speaks in a chittering and laughing sound in a strange version of... English that sounds like it is being growled through old rusty pipes. "MUST CONSUME MORE!"

An elated huff comes from Two-for-One then, and she barks out a quick bit of advice to the remaining cub, Alexandra. ~Trickster.~ Nostrils flare at this, ~Coyote tricks.~ She eyes the flanking new moon and gives a rumble. ~Don't touch its sickness.~

Alexandra charges forward to meet the creature, moving on all fours until she gets in close, at which point she'll return to two legs to take a swing at it, only remembering to open her hand and actually use claws instead of a fist at the last moment. Whether the other two decide to follow her plan or Hayden's, well, she's going to do her best to keep the thing busy. And try not to get eaten in the process.

Bends-the-Rules gives a glance back to Hayden, the 'well, duh' in his expression unmistakable for anything else. Though again he wastes little time in conversation. When Alexandra moves in, he trades off speed for size, shifting almost smoothly into hispo. Running in at the coyote thing, he goes low and for a leg, teeth set to try and grab and trip the monster up.

The charging Alexandra gets the Coyote-Bane's attention quickly and the creature whips its head first away from her... causing the mucus to flail out away from the cub. The spirit then whips its head back towards the cub as she nears, causing the dying spirit-filled mucus 'whip' to wrap around the Shadow Lord cub's leg burning through fur and skin and pulling away with a quick unraveling leaving behind burnt brown muscle in a deeply diveted ring around the cub's leg. The pain is too much for one so inexperienced and the attack on the beast misses wildly, though she instead stumbles and ends up falling forward, draped over the back of the thing which quickly becomes too preoccupied to buck off the heavy Garou just yet.

Using the distraction provided by the other cub, Rule Bender manages to get in close... only to have the Coyote sneeze up a spray of acidic bile through its nose in the Ragabash's face. Luckily the cub was on a one-track plan of attack and in sheer instinct manages to bite down into the spirit's leg, tearing away some ephemera and causing the spirit to puke up things fleshy and unrecognizable on the ground right before it. The bane starts once more to whip its head back and is going for another strike, difficult to say against who though.

Meanwhile, Two-for-One and Thunder's-Heart seem to just watch, perhaps scrutinizing the situation for an advantage!

Thunder's-Heart barks at the Philodox. ~Your pack needs your help.~ He flexes his claws, though doesn't join in the fray just yet.... despite obviously fighting to keep from doing so.

Two-for-One flicks an agitated tail in response. ~What pack.~ The halfmoon watches a moment more, taking in the information presented her by watching just that little while longer. Then she's moving, flanking wide to come up from a blind side, watching the beast as it prepares for another whip strike. She puts speed into her gait then, but also focuses her rage to drive herself up into Crinos just as she gets up beside the beast; clawed hand at the ready.

Alexandra lets out a roar of pain and anger as the smell of searing flesh and fur wafts up from the wound on her leg. It's a thin enough moon that, pain or not, she doesn't completely lose control, but she's been told her rage is a weapon, and it's a weapon that she tries to unleash now. While advanced tactics may be beyond her at the moment, raking her claws with blinding speed down the sides of the thing she's on top of is basic enough that she can manage to do that much.

Bends-the-Rules pauses a half second to shake his head, a growl rolling from deep within. The wrist of one foreleg tries a single attempt at clearing his eyes before he gives up for naught, darting in again to try and rip at the already damaged leg.

The creature continues the drawing back of it's head, that whip going high and far back, obviously angling to come back around at Alexandra again, to strike across her exposed rump as the rage spewing Shadow Lord Ahroun Cub rips and tears at the beast's side with her moment of unhindered access.

At the same time, the snarling and gagging demon Coyote claws downward at Bends-the-Rules's face, hooking a single foreclaw into the flesh between the middle and index digits of the paw trying to wipe away gunk from eyes, where it hits bone between the digits and lodges in place, getting seriously hooked into that blood-spraying paw.

In, however, comes Two-For-One who snaps out with her clawed crinos hand and snatches the end of that slimy whip from mid-air. The sizzle of acid on flesh is heard clearly and blood streams from the wounds caused in the cub's hand... but the Phildox holds strong and starts to pull back, yanking out the acidic mucus mass from deep within the spirit creature that starts wigging out like before at the sudden stealing of its prize! Alexandra is flung from the beasts back to the ground right beside it and Bends-the-Rules becomes dislodged, able to get in a quick swipe at the creature's wildly flailing face.

There is a flash of rage on the dark, crinos face of the Alpha at Twofer's indignant response and his teeth gleam in an angry snarl. Obviously that was not the correct answer. But his concern is for the ones getting injured, and he ambles forward to help the Ahroun to her feet before checking on Rulebender.

Two-for-One holds tight to that mucous whip despite the pain, leaning heavily on her strength of will to do so. She steps back, feet digging into the ground as if she were now engaged in a fierce tug of war; her on one side, mucuousy-half-eaten-nastiness on the other. And she doesn't look likely to stop until the whole vile thing is pulled free from the creature, or it tears off in the process.

Even with the Fostern's assistance, Alexandra doesn't make it to her feet before the injured leg buckles, forcing her to drop to all fours to distribute her weight in such a way that she can minimize the amount of weight being put on it. With Two-for-One in control of the mucus whip, the Ahroun makes a limping charge for the thing's throat, biting down with all the force she can muster if she gets hold and not letting go.

Bends-the-Rules runs a small circle on three legs, the fourth favored and held off the ground, his movements first taking him away and then back toward to the beast. It's when he returns that the Ragabash cub lunges again, a flash of rage and a primal side rarely seen from him as he goes for the throat, opposite Alexandra.

Two-For-One's struggle causes the creature to gag and wretch violently, using feet to try and dig into the umbral ground and pull back at its wonderful prizes! The Philodox holds on strong, the force of will allowing the ignoring of such grievous wounds that her hand receives…even when her middle finger and pinky are stripped bare to the bone…the cub holds on and rips even more of the spirit-bone filled mucus from inside the Bane.

First Alexandra tears the spirit's throat open with what can only be called a crushing bite that has the power of the warform behind and when Bends-the-Rules makes that circling bite around from the other side, he bites right into a hole made in the ephemera of the spirit and down on the mucus glob inside, burning his lips horribly... but teeth managing to oddly not be too concerned with the touch of the acid, causing a substantial amount of the mass to spill out from the tag-team effort between Ahroun and Ragabash.

The combined, even if unintentionally so, efforts of removing the spirit-goo from inside the beast causes it all to finally come pulled free like the world’s largest hairball coming free from a clogged drain and what seems like several gallons of red, green, brown and yellow watery sickness spill out from behind that plug all over the ground just between Alexandra and Bends-the-Rules. The spirit... shrinks, to the size of a normal Coyote and though still infested with the taint of the Wyrm, suddenly the mucus no longer burns and it has little in the way of power left to fight... or even reform elsewhere.

Thunder's-Heart winces again. Nasty. He moves to the downed spirit, regarding it with a critical eye before turning to his cubs. ~You all did well. I have new names for all of you. Names that reflect how you acted today. And then I will attempt to cleanse this spirit. If it is too far gone, I will see its end. Ahroun...~ He turns to Alexandra. ~You are a collected warrior, and though you need refinement, you will be a great ally in battle. Because of this I name you Calm Clouds Mask the Storm. You will find Wildfire-rhya out of the Umbra, and he will perform Rite of Wounding on your leg.~

Two-for-One lets go of her tug-o-war 'rope' and takes a step back, teeth clenched together as she works to steady herself through the pain and rush of rage that had been used to fuel her efforts. She crouches down and watches from her place there, eyes still taking in the chaotic mess of what they just fought. At the sound of elder's voice, she turns to him with a heavy, studious gaze.

The Ahroun cub dips her head respectfully to the Fostern Ragabash. ~Calm Clouds Mask the Storm,~ she repeats, carefully enunciating the name in the Mother's Tongue, getting a feel for it, clearly pleased.

Thunder's-Heart's eyes, at least, the one that isn't almost completely blacked out, are very shifty… he wants to keep track of the mess they've made... in case things start getting out of control again. But his words are for Bends-the-Rules. ~RuleBender, though the name suits you, you've proven yourself a capable tracker. The name True-Arrow-Finds-His-Mark is yours if you take it. See Wildfire-rhya for the same reasons.~ His gaze rests on Two-for-One. ~You know you're in for it, right? A Philodox does not take control of a pack and pretend it does not exist when things get rough. You get to choose from two names, or keep the one you have as if this battle did not happen. Are you Steals-the-Kill-of-Others, or Leads-Her-Foes-to-Battle? Do you deserve to keep your scars, little judge?~ He asks, a serious expression on his face.

Bends-the-Rules disentangles himself from what's left of the coyote, hobbling away from the corpse and shrinking to his lupine form again. His head shakes, dislodging more of the bile and slime before he takes himself to the alpha's side, ears laying back in acceptance.

The Coyote bane spirit is too weak to move, crumpled down on the ground, without the stolen power of those spirits it had been endlessly consuming to drive it. It now only whines and whimpers. The mucus finally, however, starts to quickly dissolve away. Those spirits that were trapped inside the disgusting mess, start to finally pull essence from the umbra back into themselves. It will be a while before they are able to reform somewhere else safe once more, but over time it will happen.

Two-for-One looks to the elder Ragabash with a heated gaze, one that dips down to the cub that has taken refuge at his side. ~I am no leader. This is no pack. I gave advice. It was ignored and mocked.~ Her hands tremble where they're loosely hanging in her crouch, ~I do not rush in like a fool. Nor will I chase after those who do. Call me what you will.~

Bends-the-Rules lifts his head just enough to look at Hayden, ears twisting toward her. Whatever thoughts he's got are kept to himself, however, and after several seconds he glances to one side as if hearing something over there. His ears splay slightly, then slightly more. He huffs and glances up at Nik then settles his gaze on the dying coyote spirit.

Alexandra watches the granting of both of the other two cubs' new names as well, somewhat uneasily as Hayden is given hers. Despite the element of punishment there, she's still a touch surprised at the Philodox's outburst. She keeps her thoughts on the matter to herself, however.

~And I am no Philodox.~ The Alpha tells Two-for-One. ~You have not answered my question. Do you deserve your scars? Or another name? Tell me how you would judge this situation, or tell me the auspice you'd prefer to be born under. But not now. You must get back and get those scarred hands if you'll have them. But first, the spirits.~ His voice is even, without a mocking or angry tone. Just factual. He moves to begin gathering up the poor desiccated coyote spirit, cradling it in his arms. He gestures for the other cubs to gather the other, smaller spirits to move them away from this wretched place. Then he begins to murmur to the coyote as he walks away, head low, eyes half closed.

Two-for-One just clams up then. (Finally?) She falls into obedience at the task given to her, remaining in Crinos as she sets to it. Albeit, without the use of a left hand that she's favoring pretty heavily just now.

<scene fades as Nik sees the cubs back to the Realm, where Ky and Alexandra meet Owen for their Rite of Wounding, while Nik performs a Rite of Cleansing for the coyote and tends to the spirits.>

Current Characters: Alexandra, Holland
Past Characters: Luke, Tabia, Karin, Slash
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