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Played by Offline rallidae [PM] Posts: 92 — Threads: 10
Signos: 0
Inactive Character
#1




The pair of nesting birds, one as startlingly blue and iridescent as cut opal and the other blacker than a crow, watched him with a stillness so unnatural that at first, Caine thought them stuffed mounts left forgotten in the foliage by an absent minded explorer. 

Until the blue one blinked — one filmy eyelid slipping over a second, and then a third, to reveal a slivering pupil — and drew itself up in one fluid motion, like a cobra rising to the notes of a charmer’s flute. Then, as if that were not performance enough, the bird cracked its orange beak open with a rasp that sounded like branches breaking.

Caine stilled when he saw the rows and rows of perfect teeth shining like pearls within its gaping mouth. 

“A little menace you are,” he whispered, before he pinned his ears and bared his incisors in a matching snarl. 

He had never been good with animals — meaning that he observed them from a distance, and limited his encounters to the occasional alley cat who, despite his warning glares, purred unnecessarily loud as it rubbed its body back and forth against his legs, back arched in smug pleasure. 

Staring pointedly into the feathered beast’s mouth, Caine thought that he would rather not have that rubbing up against his legs. He would likely not leave in one piece.

Strangely enough the bird seemed to consider his snarl as an appropriate reaction, because with a curious tilt of its disarmingly beautiful head, it snapped its beak shut and ruffled its feathers against its companion, who had watched the entire exchange with little more than a nonplussed blink of its (also disturbingly three-lidded) eyes. 

Caine curled his lips into a thin smile. Strange little creatures. Well, at the very least they had established a tenuous understanding. Mutual intimidation, or something to that effect. A bestiary he’d read as a child had recommended the tactic when dealing with creatures unknown to be frothing-at-the-mouth feral, or just a little unfriendly.

He turned towards the expanse of blue ocean lapping peacefully against the shore. Before he had even ventured past the island’s bone white beach, he had already encountered two of its supposedly sinister inhabitants. There was nothing amiss here, nothing close to the disaster that had been predicted to bring the End.

Caine had always thought the citizens of Novus too cautious compared to the hotblooded, dragon-loving Taeryn.

Just as he was about to leave the birds alone to their statuesque roost, he tensed when he heard the sucking of hooves on wet sand. When he remembered that he was not the only one curious enough to brave the bridge (or in his case, flew), his tail flicked dismissively against his legs.

He swivelled his head towards the newcomer and frowned when the birds followed suit, their movements perfectly matched. 

“Careful.” He blinked, as impassive as the unflinching duo. “I think they bite.”


open to anyone! | "speaks" | notes: come join caine as he harasses checks out the local fauna
rallidae | art








WE LIVE IN THE FLICKER
but darkness was here yesterday

♠︎ ♤ ♠︎





Played by Offline Syndicate [PM] Posts: 150 — Threads: 25
Signos: 120
Inactive Character
#2

I MUST GO DOWN TO THE SEAS AGAIN TO THE LONELY SEA AND SKY

The call brought her to heel.


After all, was discipline not simply instant, willing obedience to all orders? Was that not the phrase that had been drilled into her, over and over, during training? Instant, willing obedience to all orders. Discipline. And this call was an order. It was one that sung to her in her sleep; that visited her dreams, phantom-like and keening, in the shape of ghostly horses. Come back to the sea, it begged. There is magic there…


When she heard the whispers of the new island, Boudika had only danced away the contemplations. She refused to listen, at first, to the possibility of something so whimsical. An island that appeared after a volcano erupted, after a wall of ivy sprouted from a sea, and the only way to reach it is a long, twining volcanic path… If only she could continue to scoff and disregard those whispers; if only the curiosity did not sing inside her like a bird, caged by her very ribs. Go and see, go and see, go and see so finally, Boudika went, and Boudika saw.


She walked the narrow line of the volcanic path, her crimson eyes adverted downward. Boudika did not trust the ocean around her, and ever innate instinct that she had been born with, every instinct drilled into her felt betrayed. This was not natural. She was surrounded by the very substance that contained her greatest enemies, and her greatest fears.


I could Make you he had promised. And then the singing bird became a hawk and took flight, was her soul so elated—and fearful—at the prospect. But she banished the thoughts. Her odyssey ended when her hooves met dry sand, at last, and the anxiety she had experienced dissipated into that irresistible pull of curiosity. Perhaps… perhaps she could simply walk to the end of the island, and keep walking. Perhaps this somehow linked her to a new continent entirely…

Or worse, perhaps it linked her to her homeland. Did the old gods not say they spat Oresziah from nothing but teeth and bones? Perhaps this was a new island, born with the same old magic…


Boudika’s thoughts were drawn away. She saw a bright flash of colour farther down the beach and she pursued art at a trot, reaching the edge of dense foliage. There, a dark stallion stood and he turned to face the noise of her approach.


Careful. I think they bite.


At first, Boudika did not know to what he referred—and then her eyes were drawn back to the jewel-bright colour, and the two birds stared back. They were unnerving, and almost predatory. Boudika blinked and returned her crimson eyes to the stranger. ”So do I.” It seemed the thing to say to a stranger on a strange island.


After a long moment, staring at the birds, Boudika spoke again. ”How much of the island have you looked at?” Boudika asked. The more she stared at the birds the more uncomfortable she became—and the less alone she wanted to be.

IS A WILD CALL AND A CLEAR CALL THAT MAY NOT BE DENIED; AND ALL I ASK IS A WINDY DAY WITH THE WHITE CLOUDS FLYING, AND THE FLUNG SPRAY AND THE BLOWN SPUME AND THE SEA-GULLS GRYING. I MUST GO DOWN TO THE SEAS AGAIN TO THE VAGRANT GYPSY LIFE, TO THE GULL’S WAY AND THE WHALE’S WAY WHERE THE WIND’S LIKE A WHETTED KNIFE.

credits










Played by Offline rallidae [PM] Posts: 92 — Threads: 10
Signos: 0
Inactive Character
#3




Copperhead.

Caine’s pupils slitted when he stared into the brilliant orange disc of the setting sun. Reflected upon the waves was a second sun, a ghostly twin, its presence summoned by the joining of the sky and sea. Lower and lower the ghost sank, meeting its death in the waves.

At times, he could be more poetic than a bard. I should ask Fia if it would be a fitting occupation for me, he thought, until he remembered that Fia currently dreamed of his head on a pike. He winced — it was always something of a shock seeing himself in another one’s dreams, and in such a manner... well, he supposed he deserved it. 

He blinked when the newcomer stepped closer, draping him in her shadow. Her gaze sought his so he gave it to her, though he still saw orange where there should have been crimson. The sun had burned itself into his eyes, and it would be a few moments more until it returned to him his sight.

No matter. Caine had seen her before the light had reached him, and her coloring had been striking enough for a name to attach itself easily to her features. Raum's newest spy would not be doing his job well (“for King and Country,” he’d sworn — though he wondered if Raum had believed him) if he'd failed to familiarize himself with the faces and habits of his new mistress, Denocte.

Boudika was her name. Or, as some had called her, Copperhead. Like the snake, though she didn't look very menacing.

“So do I,” she said, in answer to his warning. Her words carried an accent, and it was not Denoctian. 

“Oh? In that case, I think you’ll earn their respect easily.” Intrigued, Caine followed her uneasy stare down towards the nesting birds, and was relieved to find them unchanged. By how they had acted before, he wouldn't be surprised if he’d found a pair of pterodactyls leering up at him. 

“How much of the island have you looked at?”

He turned to address the girl properly. “Only that,” he said, nodding amiably at the unbirdlike birds. “Though I’m sure things will only get stranger the further in one goes.”

He ran his gaze lightly over her spiralling horns and closely cut mane. Besides her name and her reputation as a dancer (he'd seen her performing at a tavern he'd stopped in just a few days ago), Caine knew little else about her. 

He was still for a moment, thinking. He’d headed for the island intending to explore it alone — to take his mind off of the den of vipers he’d pitched himself headlong into — but perhaps a companion would not be a terrible idea.

“Supposedly, there’s a statue of a unicorn with an inscription carved upon it a little ways ahead. I was heading there myself, before —” before I was hissed at by a bird. The corner of his mouth twitched before he drew it into a carefree smile. 

“Perhaps our meeting is the island’s way of telling us that two is safer than one.”


@Boudika | "speaks" | notes: hope it's ok that he knows a little of her already!
rallidae | art








WE LIVE IN THE FLICKER
but darkness was here yesterday

♠︎ ♤ ♠︎





Played by Offline Staff [PM] Posts: 289 — Threads: 146
Signos: 985,480
Official Novus Account
#4


A Random Event Has Occurred!

The birds of the island are far from its most perilous inhabitants, no matter how many (or how sharp) their teeth. They are also not the only creatures to watch the horses with curiosity - and perhaps something else.

It is a little like a jaguar, the cat that lounges hidden in the underbrush, not far away from the pair of them, pink tongue lolling between bright teeth. It is a little, too, like an ocelot, in its size and the oblong, strange shape of its spots. But though its pelt is black as pitch the makings on it shine blue and gold as the last rays of sunlight splintering into a pool; they gleam just like labradorite in rows along its sides.

As they speak of the statue it stands, and stretches long and languid, and the sound in its throat is something between purr and growl, low as the heartbeat of the island. The two birds, hearing it, take off with ringing cries from their perch in the trees, and as the cat moves like mercury down the line between jungle and shoreline its tail twists snakelike patterns in the humid air.

And then it is there, yards away from the horses, the last of the sunlight glimmering on its spots, the rest of it dark as shadow. For a moment it only regards them, something fierce and cold in its blue cut-stone eyes, and the curl of its tail becomes a question: do you really think it’s safe at all?

It is not their island.

Wider and wider the cat’s mouth opens then, black whiskers arcing back, its mouth a vital well lined with teeth. Perhaps it will speak, or maybe loose one of the screams that seem to hang like phantoms in the trees after dark - but it only yawns, and passes back into the shadow of the trees. It leaves only silence, and no grasses sway to mark its passing.




@Caine and @Boudika will find that there are more than just strange birds joining them on the island. A mysterious cat has been watching them from the shadows and has decided to make its existence knows.

Each participant will be awarded +100 signos for encountering a Random Event! How you reply is up to you; feel free to NPC the cat.

Enjoy!






To tag this account: @*'Random Events' without the asterisk.
Please be advised, tagging the Random Event account does not guarantee a response!





Played by Offline Syndicate [PM] Posts: 150 — Threads: 25
Signos: 120
Inactive Character
#5

YOUNG ONE, THERE ARE THINGS IN THIS FOREST THAT WANT TO HURT YOU. YES, WE MEAN THE FOREST WE ARE RAISING YOU IN. YES, WE MEAN THE FOREST WE WILL NOT LET YOU LEAVE. YOUNG ONE, THE ONLY THINGS IN THIS FOREST WANT TO HURT YOU. YOUNG ONE, THE THINGS IN THIS FOREST HAVE CLAWS AND FANGS. YES, WE MEAN CLAWS LIKE THE ONES ON YOUR HANDS. YES, WE MEAN FANGS LIKE THE ONES IN YOUR MOUTH. YES, WE MEAN YOU SHOULD AVOID THINGS WITH CLAWS AND FANGS. THEY ARE DANGEROUS AND WANT TO HURT YOU. 


Boudika’s crimson eyes had rested for only a moment upon the winged strange—before adverting to the strange birds, of which he spoke. They were bizarre, perhaps, but Boudika did not know if she would call them “fearsome”. Perhaps that was only because she was more accustomed to horses with shapes like liquid, and lips that only thinnly veiled the rowed fangs of a shark. At his first comment, Boudika’s lips twisted wryly into what could only be described as a smirk.


“Even stranger?” Despite the sternness of her tone, nearly sardonic, she felt anxious. The idea unsettled her a bit, perhaps, in the way that the entire island gleamed like a faceted gem. There was something distinctly artificial about it, not in the composition of the island itself, but in the shine, the brightness, the fanged birds that screamed in a way too reminiscent of death. Then there was this stranger, with his darkness like an abyss, devouring the light where he stood. Boudika had rarely seen an equine so utterly black, and the sharp contrast between the island’s throbbing colour and Caine’s lack of it was difficult to look at.


As she reasoned through his suggestion, Boudika decided it would be foolish not to accept. “Two in this place definitely seems better than one.” Was it just her, or did the ground feel like a pulse beneath their hooves? Boudika thought to ask, but refrained. The statue was why she was here, as well. The rumours had at last gotten the best of her. The call, the curiosity, the… enticement, which was far too much like the danger of the sea.


At the mention of the statue, however, Boudika’s eyes caught on an abrupt flash of movement. It was languid, unhurried, and her eyes took a moment to focus on the dark cat. It gleamed, wrought of sapphire, and oblong spots like bullion lace.The birds abandoned their perch, and the cat yawned at them. Although not large, there was a certain amount of malice in the shine of its teeth against its dark lips, and the vicious brightness of the eyes. Again, deeply faceted stones. To watch it was captivating; like the movement of a snake, or a spider weaving a web.


Then it disappeared, with all the insolence of a cat. That was reassuring, at least—that a cat was still a cat. Boudika rested in the silence for a moment, eerily noting the birds had stopped with their bizarre ruckus of noise. “… should we… follow it?” A part of her felt strangely compelled, as though it would take them exactly where they wanted to go.


She realised, with as sort of shock, that she had not yet given her name. And rather than correct herself, her tongue caught on her teeth. This did not seem like the sort of place, where one gave their name. The island might twist it from her, might corrupt it—did a name not have power? So Boudika did not ask for his, and took a tentative step after the feline.



YOUNG ONE, EVERYTHIGN IN THIS FOREST NEEDS TO BE KILLED. THEY'RE DANGEROUS, TOO DANGEROUS TO LIVE. YES, WE MEAN THIS FOREST THAT YOU ARE IN. YES, WE MEAN THIS FOREST WE WILL NOT LET YOU LEAVE. THE THINGS ARE SO DANGEROUS, YOUNG ONE. YES, WE MEAN THINGS LIKE YOU, NOTHING GOOD LIVES IN THIS FOREST. THAT'S WHY WE WON'T LET ANYTHING LEAVE. YOUNG ONE, WHY ARE YOU LOOKING AT US LIKE THAT? WHY ARE YOU BARRING YOUR FANGS, SLASHING YOUR CLAWS? THIS IS EXACTLY WHAT WE MEAN. EVERYTHING IN THIS FOREST WANTS TO HURT US. EVERYTHING IN THIS FOREST NEEDS TO BE KILLED. 

credits











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