Author Topic: i weep for all i fail to be [prp anika]  (Read 350 times)

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Offline Sycamore.

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i weep for all i fail to be [prp anika]
« on: March 30, 2016, 06:16:22 PM »
It was easy for him to admit he didn’t like this war business. He had only managed to kill a grand total of two Inarian wolves, and he was starting to feel sick. He didn’t feel proud of it. He felt ashamed. All he could taste was the blood in his mouth, on his teeth, burned into his tongue. The blood of innocents. They fought for their side just as he fought for his.

He had opted not to coat himself in the poison, yet now regretted it. Perhaps he wouldn’t feel so guilty. Perhaps he’d feel more as if the dead had brought it upon themselves for biting him. He did not know.

What he did know was that he had strayed from the battlefield in search of a quiet spot where he could stop and rest, try and get the emotions of someone’s dying breath out of his head. He found a clean water source, one that both sides had missed, and shoved his mouth into the stream, washing his mouth out first, then drinking deeply. The sounds of an approaching wolf pricked at his ears, and he whipped around, baring his teeth at the newcomer.

She did not smell like any Saboran he had met, nor like any he had not met. She had to be Inarian. His heart clenched, and worry pierced through his brain. He did not want to kill another, but he did not want to die. He growled at her, a warning. Stay back.

sycamore played by effie

Offline Anika

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Re: i weep for all i fail to be [prp anika]
« Reply #1 on: April 06, 2016, 03:39:49 PM »
Anika never knew that it was possible to feel this tired.

This weight was overwhelming. Her bones were concrete. Her armor was slowing her down.

It had taken so very little to reduce the knight to this. She felt like a battleship covered in nicks and dents; her iron hide carrying the scratches accumulated from a thousand collisions with the shoreline, a thousand scrapes with other vessels. She felt weathered down. She was burdened by this exhaustion that came with no name. War was never meant to be glorious; she knew this, and yet nevertheless she had taken some satisfaction in the knowledge that she was coming to aid one of Nardir's allies. It was the vindication that someone felt from knowing that they were fighting for the right side. Anika thought that she was capable of this.

If Anika could feel anything beyond this weight, she would have been ashamed of herself. Here stood the great General now, striding to her victory, heedless to the crunching of the bodies that laid at her feet. This was what Triumph looked like: a forest that might have been beautiful once, its purple trees bowed as if in mourning, its grasses stained red. Something so irrevocably scarred that it would never look the same again. Saboro could be chased from Inaria's borders, but they would leave their imprint - the bodies of their fallen - behind.

When Anika found Sycamore in that isolated grove, it was because she was wandering, forever in that state of weariness. If it weren't for sheer circumstance, if any Saboran saw such a prime target bumbling about aimlessly, they could have recognized the opportunity and lunged straight for her back without any resistance at all.

But Anika would not be stricken from the war so easily.

Sycamore was far from your average war machine, a haggard thing hunched by the water that flowed through his little sanctuary. He didn't look imposing in the least, yet despite appearances, he still summoned the effort to growl. The message was clear: stay away. Anika narrowed her eyes, an ugly, simmering feeling boiling inside of her. More Saborans to fight -- more stupid effing people that wouldn't give up, and he expected her to back down. As if that was an option. Sycamore's warning wasn't a courtesy -- it was an insult. Anika thought that she was simply angry; a more apt descriptor would be Frustration. She was war-weary, bitter, and frustrated at all these people, all these wolves she had given every opportunity to surrender, and because of their stupidity and pride they didn't. And because of that -- because of that --

She issued a warning in return, snapping her teeth around empty air and drawing back. It was nothing more than a feint that, if Sycamore had any sense in his head, would send him scurrying. Her paws remained spread apart on the ground, and her posture was unwavering. The growl that rumbled in her throat was like gravel in a cement mixer.

She would not run because she had no reason to run. She wasn't the one in the wrong. She had nothing to be ashamed of -- she wasn't the one fighting on behalf of a savage, tyrannical empire that had started this war over one Queen's delusional want for a plaything. Saboro's soldiers would take their guilt home with them, and she hoped it would rot them alive.


We'll keep fighting 'til the end
For a time that we've been taught to keep.

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[1/30/2015 10:42:39 PM] Nugget Emily: "they say there's a ghost in the mountains who criticizes your sexual standards"

Offline Sycamore.

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Re: i weep for all i fail to be [prp anika]
« Reply #2 on: April 06, 2016, 04:05:42 PM »
The grove had been his safe space in the midst of a battle, yet someone had infringed upon it. He felt nothing but disappointment at himself. A Sentry who’d thrown himself into battle as though hoping it’d bring him something. Power? Glory? No. He didn’t want those things. He wanted confidence. He wanted the war to end. He wanted to go home. It had wrought nothing but pain on both sides, and he was done.

This woman looked angry, war torn, finished with the war, yet he knew she would not back down. He had thought she was infringing upon his little sanctuary, yet… Wasn’t he the one infringing upon hers? Her land, her home? He had come here with Saboro, had killed her people, people she may have known, and he had the audacity to growl at her? She warned him back, her jaws snapping shut violently, and although he did not flinch or skitter away, he simply moved away from the water, and he did it slowly.

He was done. He didn’t want to fight anymore. If she let him live he’d return to the infirmary, patrol the ways toward it and ensure that no Inarian got close, but he was done with the battlefield. He watched her carefully, his eyes fixed on her. She watched him, anger burning behind her eyes. And rightly so.

”… Drink. I’m done,” he said bluntly. Sycamore wanted to sit down, relax his aching bones, but he couldn’t risk it. Not yet. Should he tell her that he’s sorry for what he’s done? He couldn’t - wouldn’t - speak for Saboro, but he could speak for himself. ”I won’t attack you.” He was sincere if nothing else.

Perhaps Lionel was right. Maybe she would tear him down because his kindness was a weakness. He could only hope she wouldn’t.

sycamore played by effie

Offline Anika

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Re: i weep for all i fail to be [prp anika]
« Reply #3 on: April 06, 2016, 07:43:22 PM »
Sycamore didn't run like she was hoping, but her aggression did rattle him, and he took a few steps back to avoid further provoking her. The distance did little to abate the woman's mounting anger. Anika wasn't interested in the space that he occupied, nor the water that he drank. If someone were to suggest that this was nothing more than a skirmish over territory, she would have found the very notion insulting. She wasn't a bully that needed to earn food and land through intimidation. Saboro had pushed her to this. All she wanted was for Sycamore to leave, and thus for the immediate threat of conflict to vanish.

Instead of making a quick exit, Sycamore simply stepped aside. "Drink," Sycamore said. "I'm done. I won't attack you."

The snarl that Anika wore took on an incredulous edge. What, just like that? He had to be trying to trick her. It couldn't be that easy. The words made her confused -- and then overwhelmed her with indignation. Poor Sycamore's well-intentioned peace offering ignited all the kindling that Anika hadn't even realized that she was carrying. This bastard thought that he could trick her? That she was so desperate for reprieve that she would stoop and scrape for the slightest gesture of kindness? Anika saw right through this pathetic facade.

The last words Sycamore was probably expecting to hear were spoken in a snarl. "Is this a joke?" Anika's paws tensed in the soil. She was now shaking with rage, and in spite of herself, was stumbling over her own words. "Do you think... Do you think I was born yesterday?"

Sycamore believed that there was apparently some room for compromise when she thought that she had made herself perfectly clear. He was going to run back to his little band of savages, and she was going to... there was no next course of action. All Anika wanted was for this war to be over and done with, and she refused to believe that she had happened to encounter Saboro's only good Samaritan. She might have dared to hope so a few weeks ago, before Nero, before Octavian, before Artemisia, before Oriana, but now she knew. She knew what war was like, and she knew that nothing could ever be so easily resolved.

Anika lunged, but she wasn't aiming for Sycamore. She landed with the full force of her weight into the stream, bringing her paws down into the water, and with that, sent a great splash hurtling toward Sycamore. If he failed to move in time, he would be drenched from head to toe, and Anika would hurl her last warning at the sopping and miserable buffoon. "LEAVE!" she roared.
« Last Edit: April 06, 2016, 07:44:47 PM by Anika »


We'll keep fighting 'til the end
For a time that we've been taught to keep.

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[1/30/2015 10:42:39 PM] Nugget Emily: "they say there's a ghost in the mountains who criticizes your sexual standards"

Offline Sycamore.

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Re: i weep for all i fail to be [prp anika]
« Reply #4 on: April 06, 2016, 08:09:44 PM »
He offered her peace, and he was nothing if not gracious. He meant every word he said, as he always did. He was honest, believed in honesty and kindness. He was of a rare breed in a pack like Saboro. He was not like everyone else, and that much was made crystal clear as soon as the war broke out. The others had ran, snarling, straight into the front lines, tearing people down. He… He had not. He had watched Tornado wrestle his way through the Inarian ranks, guarded by the Jackdaws, and he had felt sick. He was there for his loyalty, not because he believed in the violence.

Anika snarled at him. It was a deep guttural sound, and he stared at her as her rage built. Oh crap. She didn’t know him, and who knows who she had encountered upon the battlefield already? She had no idea that he meant the words he spoke, had no clue that he truly was not like most of, if not all of the Saborans who had flocked to the ranks to defend the Empire.

”Is this a joke?” crap.

"Do you think... Do you think I was born yesterday?” She was struggling to get her words out through her rage, and he stared at her in horror. He didn’t want to fight again. Not again. He wanted to go home, wanted to see Lionel, tell him he was right, that maybe it was time he changed.

He tensed up as she lunged, expecting the worst, but instead water crashed down upon his head, and he slowly opened his eyes to glare at her, water dropping from his eyelashes. LEAVE!” She bellowed at him, but he did not move. Oh, how he wanted to leave, wanted to go home and leave the blood soaked ground behind him, never think of those purple trees again. But he had to stay for his pack.

He lunged at her without warning, paws outstretched as he aimed to tackle her to the floor, his jaws open wide to attempt to close them around any part of her, to hold, threaten with injury. He’d try, for Saboro.

sycamore played by effie

Offline Anika

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Re: i weep for all i fail to be [prp anika]
« Reply #5 on: April 11, 2016, 01:31:31 PM »
Once more, Anika's posturing fell on deaf ears. Instead of turning and running, the wolf that Anika previously dismissed as unassuming stood his ground, sopping wet, but undeterred. Shrugging off the water that now dripped from his fur, he retaliated with tooth and claw, streaking for her in a full-body blow. It seemed that it was time to dispense with courtesy. If he wanted a fight, he was sure as hell going to get one.

While Anika did attempt to lunge to the side, moving to dodge the straightforward shot in what little time she had been afforded, she could not move quickly enough to completely spare herself from injury. There was simply not enough distance between them. Sycamore failed at his attempt to wrestle Anika to the ground, but he had accomplished something else -- he had collided with her flank as he passed by, raking her with his teeth. It wasn't enough to pin her as he anticipated, but it had another, unexpected consequence: he upset her balance. In other circumstances, Anika would have recovered quickly enough to stabilize herself, but overtaxed, overtired, and still healing from previous injuries, she could not summon the composure to ground herself.

Large paws scrabbled pathetically at the earth as Anika grabbed desperately for purchase, gravity thwarting her as the world did a pirouette on its axis -- and with an incoherent exclamation that may have been a curse, she tumbled over, landing in a sprawl in the stream. A great splash of water was thrown into the air before showering the now sopping wet, disoriented malinois, who blinked repeatedly in what could easily be interpreted as almost comical disbelief. Days from now, she would bruise and cramp in unmentionable places, but at this moment, the only thing hurt was her pride.

Should Sycamore launch himself at her again, Anika would frenetically try to backpedal, but would nevertheless be crushed beneath him. If not, Anika would blearily make eye contact with Sycamore, dripping and deflated -- before her lips curled back to flash rows of fangs, eyes turning to fire with a renewed sense of rage.

(New goal: she wouldn't kill Sycamore. So far, Anika had miraculously avoided killing any of the wolves she had faced in this war, even if the circumstances would condone it, and she wanted to continue that pattern. Her plan was to beat him so thoroughly that she would erase all memory of her in this undignified state.)


We'll keep fighting 'til the end
For a time that we've been taught to keep.

[ #E1A95F ] | played by Sunblink.
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Quote
[1/30/2015 10:42:39 PM] Nugget Emily: "they say there's a ghost in the mountains who criticizes your sexual standards"

Offline Sycamore.

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Re: i weep for all i fail to be [prp anika]
« Reply #6 on: April 16, 2016, 06:55:35 AM »
His bite missed, and he was unable to push her to the ground, but he could taste blood under his tongue. Disgust bloomed in the back of his throat. Not again. He pivoted, bracing himself for her attack, but instead watched as she scrabbled at wet dirt and then collapsed into the stream. Though she’d likely kill him if she knew his thoughts, she looked pitiful, and Sycamore wanted nothing more than to take the few steps between them and haul her to her feet.

It was clear from the way Anika held herself that she was done with the war, and she wanted to go home. She was fed up of Saborans killing her friends, invading their territory, and Sycamore couldn’t blame her. If their roles were reversed, and it was Saboro being invaded, he would be angrier, he would be fighting tooth and claw to protect his land, to protect the people.

But their roles were not reversed.

He hesitated, Lionel’s words ringing in his ears. ”There are those who would mistake your kindness for weakness, and they would tear you down in a heartbeat if it meant furthering themselves.” Sycamore’s eyes flicked to the dog, her exhausted body sagging in the water, and he pushed the words aside. He didn’t care.

He kept his distance, and she stared at him, her eyes ablaze and her lips pulled back, and he smiled. It was a small smile, not meant to humiliate or mock. It was tired, almost accepting of what she could do. ”I don’t want to fight any more,” he admitted. ”I want to go home.”

sycamore played by effie

Offline Anika

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Re: i weep for all i fail to be [prp anika]
« Reply #7 on: May 10, 2016, 11:59:15 AM »
Sycamore's assault sent her sprawling, but despite his advantage, he elected not to pounce on his vulnerable adversary. Anika writhed under his scrutiny as she struggled to her feet, ignoring the pain that gripped her muscles. At last, she was once again facing him with some semblance of dignity, even while dripping and practically shaking with rage. But the look on Sycamore's face returned none of the animosity she felt. The smile he wore was an insult, not a benediction. Anika's ears flickered in bewilderment. This was what she wanted, and yet she refused to see it as a relief. It's a trick, it had to be a trick.

"Do you think it's that simple?" Anika spat. She ignored the undignified way in which the droplets that dangled from her chin were sent flying by that action. "This war is, is..."

Pointless? Unnecessary? Who was she to criticize Nardir's motivations for assisting their comrades? She had no idea why Inaria had chosen to provoke Saboro, besides that they were protecting a refugee who, apparently, was of great significance to Saboro's queen. If Nardir were in the same position, she would have encouraged a similar course of action. Those who were willing to sacrifice an innocent life to secure their freedom did not deserve that freedom. Admirable goals, she had to admit -- and yet, she was furious. She was infuriated that she was limping from battle to battle, fighting relentlessly, each fallen foe just another body heaped onto her back. She was exhausted. She could feel the weight pinning her to the ground, like a dark, oppressive mountain of boulders, and she was just hobbling along, clearly buckling under the accumulated weight.

Anika had a feeling she would carry that weight all the way home. She swallowed her words before she could say something too revealing; despite this understanding, she wanted to prevent herself from blurting out something regrettable. "--It's not that easy." Why did she believe that? Why was she so determined to see this particular battle, something she had no conviction for, through to its conclusion?

"If you really don't want to fight," Anika snarled, lips wrinkling over keen white fangs, her eyes narrowing into slits. "Then run."

She brought her paw down into the river again, flinging a wave of water that splashed harmlessly against the bank. Sycamore stood too far away for it to make any difference. This time she didn't mean to threaten him, and she didn't care whether or not he was soaked. Anika was simply releasing some of her frustration, and she didn't care about the collateral. She wanted a moment to be petty, disgusting, and dishonorable; to thrash and scream and throw a tantrum at no one in particular, decimating a harmless target capable of enduring the brunt of her wrath.


We'll keep fighting 'til the end
For a time that we've been taught to keep.

[ #E1A95F ] | played by Sunblink.
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Quote
[1/30/2015 10:42:39 PM] Nugget Emily: "they say there's a ghost in the mountains who criticizes your sexual standards"

Offline Sycamore.

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Re: i weep for all i fail to be [prp anika]
« Reply #8 on: May 19, 2016, 08:28:17 PM »
Anika drew herself up and onto her feet, and Sycamore watched her quietly, letting her right herself. Water dripped from her fur, and they landed on rocks with faint pats. Her eyes still burned, her rage still etched into the creases around her narrowed eyes. And he smiled. Despite it all, he smiled. Her ears flicked, and his smile faltered just a little. He knew she wouldn’t believe him, knew attempting to call for peace between the two would be fruitless.

Would he be ashamed if he was forced to run back to Saboro’s infirmary with injuries and his tail between his legs?

”Do you think it’s that simple?” His smile slid from his face, and his ears flicked back as he watched her. ”This war is, is…”

The war is… Painful. If Sycamore was honest, he had no idea what he was doing. He was fighting for loyalty to his Sabor and Sabora, to Crenate, to those important to him. He had no real idea of the meaning behind the battles that had hurt and killed so many. Who were they to march upon Inaria and kill their people? But had their situations been reversed, surely he’d be fighting tooth and claw with reason he was aware of. The war would prey on his mind as much as it would his body.

 ”—It’s not that easy.”

She was right. It wasn’t easy, none of this was easy. But he just wanted to leave. He wanted to let people live in the peace that had been rudely interrupted. ”If you really don’t want to fight, then run.”

No.

He would not run. Sycamore watched the water rain down upon her, splashing up the sides of the bank. Was he stupid? Probably. Was he a coward? He liked to think not. The Sentry swallowed, his eyes locked on hers, watching her body language, the tilt of her big ears, and he shook his head. ”I don’t want to run, and I don’t want to fight. I’m not fighting you any more.” He did not smile at her again; she didn’t seem to appreciate it the first time. Slowly, he stepped forward, and moved to the stream. Keeping his eyes on her, he lowered his head to drink. Then he closed his eyes. Let her do what she will.

sycamore played by effie