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In Search of Solace

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PostSubject: In Search of Solace May 1st 2014, 14:46

Her call sounded through the silence, a melodic din offered to whoever was near enough to hear it.  She loved the sound of her own howl, and always had.  Her mother had taught her once that every howl is unique.  A howl was a wolf’s personal signature, something that could no be duplicated.  There was nothing menacing in Echo’s call, and her ebony nostrils tested the air cautiously for any sign of a stranger’s scent.  The place was littered with smells, enough to terrify the wandering female, but she inhaled another breath and howled once more.  She paused, straining her ears to listen.  In the distance, she thought she heard an answer – her father’s howl, the unmistakable tenor of her sire.  For a moment, Echo perked, but then she remembered: he is dead now.  They were all dead now.  Her expression melted into sadness once more as the realization sank in again.

Her paws were worn, her mind weary, and her heart as heavy as a boulder.  Her coat was covered in dust and leaves from her long journey, giving the young wolf an unkempt, wild appearance.  Every step she took closer to the forest was tentative, for Echo knew she wasn’t supposed to be there.  These lands were claimed by a pack, she was certain of this, but she hadn’t an inkling whether the local alpha was kind or cruel, accepting or violent.  She hoped it would be the former, for she was tired of running.  She had been alone for too long now.  Her ribs were visible beneath her shaggy coat, a testament to just how long it had been since her last successful solo hunt.

Amber eyes were shining in the scant afternoon sunshine as the light filtered through the vibrant green treetops. The sudden sound of a bird taking wing overhead startled the wolf, who uttered a sharp gasp.  She looked up quickly, but saw only a flash of color as the bird disappeared into the sky.  For a second, Echo felt a pang of envy for the bird.  How nice it must be to fly away, far away from the ground and those who called it home.  Her heart was racing as she took another deep, steadying breath, still waiting to see who would appear from the verdant forest to greet the newcomer.  She was tired, but she was prepared to run.  So many had chased her away since her time spent reluctantly as a solitary wolf.  A chill ran up the fae's spine, in spite of the warm summer day.  She felt as if eyes were upon her, and she glanced around quickly.
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PostSubject: Re: In Search of Solace May 2nd 2014, 01:52

The call woke her early one morn. It stretched across the border and into their territory to find its way to a females ears. There it niggled its way into her dreams, waking her sharply. Nnlya's eyes flew open and she yawned, her maw stretching wide and flashing great canines. Salmon pink darted over hues of cream, coffee and coal. The sweet she-wolf would crawl her way out of her cosy little den and greet the early dawn.The body rose gracefully, dipping the chest into the dirt and raising the rump to the sky in a great feline-like stretch. She rolled her shoulders and shook out her fur, preparing for the run ahead. She set off at a brisk trot, distancing herself from the main clearing before releasing a howl of her own. A sweet symphony to make known that the call would be answered. There was no threat and no hostility, but her status required there be a level of respect between the two.

Great paws, reminiscent of their ancient ancestors, thudded into the hard packed earth. Each step only hardened the redeveloped callouses on the pads of her paws. Where only weeks earlier there had been cracks and scrapes smeared with blood, were now the reinvented paw pads strong enough to run for days. But this was not to be a long journey. She found the border soon enough. A dense undergrowth grew here. Almost every surface was covered in ferns and mosses so vibrant it was almost painful to look at them. Fortunately a path provided easy travel to the nearest border, which was easily followed until the stranger came into view. Instantly a grin spread across her lips. This was the second white wolf in a row she had met at the border, an amusing coincidence she found.

The Delta approached the female with the silly smile plastered on her face, trying to make the female feel at ease. "Hello there, miss. Allow me to introduce myself. I am Delta Nnlya of these the lands of Helidos. Might I ask what you are doing here at our borders?" She tried not to sound too concerned, for the she-wolf had a rather dishevelled, unloved look to her. As though she had been through some hardships recently. Though, who hadn't in these lands? Everyone had a story to tell, it was merely a question of how much they chose to reveal. Despite her sunny appearance, Nnlya was not one to tell all to just anyone. She had done that once and now he was missing, though the two incidents were unlikely to be related. But this was a story for another time. For now she focused her attention on the female before her, ready to provide assistance at a moments notice. She was not one to leave a wolf in need lying helpless on the border where other, unsavoury characters might choose to make something sinister of the broken wolf.

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PostSubject: Re: In Search of Solace May 2nd 2014, 14:30

A final howl parted her jaws, a primal call, the language of all those who had come before.  She fell silent again, ivory ears perked for any signs of life in the surrounding woodlands.  The songbirds, whistling their own primitive tunes in the trees, didn’t heed the lone wolf, ignoring her howls.  Finally, in the distance, Echo heard a faint reply, the howl of another of her kind.  The malnourished fae uttered a soft sigh, her head turning this way and that swiftly as she looked for movement in the surrounding vegetation.  It was hard to feel relief when the approaching wolf could very easily be vicious.  Her heart was racing a mile a minute, and disturbing thoughts entered Echo’s frightened mind: what if an intolerant, protective pack called this beautiful place their home?  Why had she even come here?  What if a hulking, enraged alpha was on his way at that very moment?  What if...

Nervously, the female’s tail tucked unconsciously beneath her pale frame, hidden away beneath her empty belly.  Now was not the time to run away, despite her anxieties.  It was too late to run now.  She had done enough running for one lifetime, anyway.  When the ferns parted and the she-wolf made her appearance, Echo’s golden eyes were instantly fixed on the other.  Silently, she was grateful to see that it was a fae approaching instead of a brute.  Somehow, that was just a little less terrifying, and Nnlya was smiling – she looked so friendly that for an instant, Echo was taken aback.   Maybe she was the alpha here?  The snowy white muzzle of the solitary wolf lowered, both ears drooping as a sign of submission.  Echo knew she was like intruding, and the last thing she desired was trouble.  Nnlya did not seem threatening, but that didn’t mean she shouldn’t be shown respect, and Echo knew this.  She had been alone for a long time, but she understood how packs worked, even if her own had been a little unconventional.

”I – I am called Echo,” she responded, her feminine voice barely louder than a hoarse whisper.  Nnlya was not an alpha, but a delta – still more than a wolf like Echo could ever hope to be in a pack she was not born into.  Helidos.  The name ruminated in her mind as she fell silent, attempting to find a suitable answer to the question posed.  She swallowed a lump forming in her throat, trying to speak more assertively, for what pack would want a terrified wolf?  Her posture remained submissive, but her voice was firm.  ”I have come in search of a new pack and a new home.  I come from lands far from here.  My pack...”  Her words tapered off, her expression crestfallen as reality struck her once again.  ”I no longer have a pack, and the life of a loner is not for me, you see.  I... I can hunt with a pack. I'm great with pups, too,” she offered with a weak grin in a weak effort to make herself seem like a desirable edition to the delta’s pack. Echo was admittedly not the most valuable warrior a pack could acquire, for she did not lust for bloodshed and chaos, as many wolves did.
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PostSubject: Re: In Search of Solace May 3rd 2014, 20:36

Nnlya was quick to notice the faes easy submission. It was good. It meant the wolf knew what was expected of her. She only hoped the female was not overly submissive, she would hate to have to award the rank of Omega to the poor child. It didn't seem likely that she would survive if she had to hunt for herself. Certainly the Delta was not about to award the rank of Hunter to her. Despite her assurances of her abilities hunting in a pack, the malnourished look was not a promising one to behold. But her other apparent skill set would be one of use. Caregivers were always necessary. With Autumn so close and winter nipping on its heels, there were wolves soon to be coming into heat and mating quick to follow. So many new arrivals and the prospect of other couples wishing to consummate their mating, the pack might very well be flooded with pups come spring.

Alanoth and Crystal would surely be glad for the help. Who knew, maybe this little white wolf could be the next Lead Caretaker. Of course, that would be up to the Alphas discretion. She sat back easily on her haunches, tail curling around her paws. An easy smile still graced her face as she tried to ease the newcomers probable discomfort. "Echo, a good name. Let us hope that your actions will live up to its meaning, and you will be remembered throughout the ages. Your wisdom passed on. But only time will tell." She shifted her weight slightly to her left side, settling more comfortably on the undergrowth.

She listened as the female spoke, understanding the hesitation with which she shared her past."You have no need to be nervous here. In Helidos one might seek whatever it is they need. A friend of mine found a family. Another his reprieve. And I found redemption. We all have pasts with shadows lurking. But we make a choice to allow a light to enter our lives. If ever you should need an ear to listen, I will be there. But all I ask of you now is your oath of loyalty to our Alpha Azul and those who may follow him. Swear that you will abide by your duties and I will make you a Caretaker in this pack and take you to our healers or whatever you wish." it was up to the other now. She had the choice to begin a new life. Nnlya could only hope it was the right one.

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PostSubject: Re: In Search of Solace May 4th 2014, 15:46

Echo didn’t consider herself to be especially wise, nor was she the bravest, or the best at anything, really, but the other’s gracious words about her moniker were met with a growing smile and a slow nod.  Maybe she was smarter than she gave herself credit for.  Already, she could sense that her decision to approach this territory had been the right one.  ”Thank you.  I hope that I will prove my worth to your pack, someday.  Helidos.”  She breathed the name with obvious reverence, enjoying the feel of the syllables on her tongue.  As Nnlya told the happy stories of friends who had found new lives in the lands, Echo moved closer.  Her tail swayed gently now, approaching the delta with gaining confidence.  Though her head was still ducked submissively to prove that she truly did understand how these manners were supposed to work, the smile was still spreading across her pale muzzle.

It was her first attempt at joining a pack she hadn’t been born into, but it seemed to be going perfectly, and the underfed she-wolf relaxed her tensed muscles visibly.  Instinct told the femme that Nnlya was one who could be trusted.  The fae’s posture was strong, but her voice was calming to Echo’s frayed nerves.  She looked healthy and, mostly importantly, she looked sane, with no hint of malicious intent or cruelty towards the weaker female.  If the other pack members were half as kind as Nnlya, then Echo knew she had stumbled across something truly special in the lush forest.

In Echo's mind, pups were the future, they were everything – to be trusted with the pack’s little ones would be a privilege, to play a part in the next generation’s upbringing and training would be a noble distinction within the pack.  Echo gave an enthusiastic nod.  ”I swear my loyalty to Alpha Azul, to the Helidos pack, and to the duties expected of me.”  The words were almost overwhelming as she spoke them aloud, the importance of their meaning ruminating in the female’s mind.  It was more than she had anticipated, even better than she could have dreamed.  ”It would be an honor to care for the young.  Without new life, where would we be?”  The white wolf smiled, punctuating her comments with an assured nod.  ”I was always taught to care for the most helpless among us, since they won’t always be so small and weak.  The littlest ones can grow up to be the most worthy of the litter.”

So many questions were filtering through Echo’s mind: how many wolves called this place home?  How big was the territory, and where were the boundaries?  Were there hostile packs nearby?  She almost forgot how desperately thirsty she was and the emptiness of her belly.
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PostSubject: Re: In Search of Solace May 4th 2014, 16:22

Nnlya sat quietly in wait for the words to deal the females fate. With any potential threat quelled and a new member to swell their numbers, the females thoughts turned to the health of the white wolf present. Certainly she needed food. And a place to rest. The Delta would do all she might to help this newcomer acclimatise to their pack life and help her regain her strength. The fae would benefit from a good meal and a long nights rest, perhaps a little exercise to keep her weary limbs from locking. But all was only a potential future until the words were spoken.

When the words finally came they were soft and sweet, as if speaking to a young babe barely weaned from suckling his mothers milk. Indeed this one would make a sweet caregiver. Should her Drogo return to her and bring her the future she had always dreamed of, she would like to see this fae help care for the pups. She smiled at the thought. That is, if the she can keep up with them. If her brood were to be anything like their mother, any caretaker would have their hands full. Though perhaps if they had more of Drogo in them, they might be far more dutiful. She could only wish them a happy puphood, missing of terrors and war and death. How wistful the female mind can be at times. She knew it likely that Drogo would not return to her, yet she lived on in hope.

Finally came a time when she might speak to the new Caretaker and award what was rightfully hers. "My dear you have acquitted yourself well. You have no need to hold submission to me, we are all friends here. Come cross our borders as Caretaker Echo and take up your duties. I shall lead you to our pack clearing and it's kill pile, that you might recover your strength swiftly. Choose a den to your liking and make your home. Welcome home little one." Though the fae was possibly only weeks or a month or two younger than the Delta, Nnlya still felt a sort of sisterly bond between them. The Delta the older sibling, charged with the care and protection of her sweet and innocent younger sibling, Echo.

Ooc - sorry, this was short. You don't need to reply to this. You may now change your name to Caretaker Echo and join the Helidos group under the ranks tab. You have full permission to post in the Helidos lands and neutral territories. Welcome!

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