Full Version: black and gold
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The mist here, cool and ubiquitous, turned her coat to charcoal in the morning hours, dew dampening her flanks and giving the illusion of fiery cracks and crevasses where her undercoat showed beneath her overcoat. She'd never been so far north, only experiencing Erro and the stinking swamp that bordered it for a brief time before headed south again, but that was no way for one to call themselves an explorer. Masa needed to see more - do more - before she could be happy enough to pick just one place to call her own, so to speak.

Quernus at least seemed popular, smelling of many wolves, even possibly that dark male she'd met briefly at the lake, but she paid it no mind. A place was not a good place simply because of who was there, but rather what adventures could be had - even from here, however, she could see the great trees had their potential. Shadows stretched out here like fingers, clawing at the soil, concealing things untold that just waited to be unearth by the curious little Djinn and her exploits.

Deeper, she ventured into the woods, oblivious for the most part as she skirted massive trees and navigated over boulders and logs. By the time she stopped to rest she was just a shade too filthy for her own liking, and took a break to groom in the mid-morning light, now that most of the fog had burned off and her coat had returned mostly to its original orange and yellow coloration, and had even begun to wonder how a place that smelled so active could seem so desolate, evidently devoid of other wolves as she'd yet to meet any.

The greeting came monotonous from the shadows, a call from the dark as the darkly iridescent wolf slunk closer. She'd followed the vibrantly colored creature for quite some time now, her breath hitching as she navigated the narrow deer trods and pushed through banks of vegetation to keep her in her sights. Many assumptions ran through her mind as she watched the mist play on the woman's coat, and how the elegant cuff and pendant dangled from the creature's horn. Despite being very obviously canine in the face (aside from the scales and horns, of course), Evike wasn't entirely positive that this woman was all wolf by the way she twisted effortlessly and the proportional shortness in her soot-covered legs... but it was her fur - that ever-changing fur - that really excited the mage, that got her edging closer.

This stranger groomed like a cat, combing leaves and debris from her long silky coat with her teeth, smoothing stray hairs with her mottled tongue. Evike was in a way fascinated, settling a foot or so from the trees in a loose sit. Hesitantly, she sought to further interrupt the stranger's mid-morning ritual, craning her neck some as she peered at her. "I suppose that should be a "welcome". A... are you looking for something?" For it certainly seemed she was searching. Evike certainly hoped she was, and furthermore she hoped she could help her find whatever it was... especially if her hunches proved correct.
Long dark ears twitched at the first hello, but she carried on with her efforts, prying a stick of all things from her nape, discarding it at her feet. "Hello." Steel eyes skated about the clearing as she carefully scratched behind her ear with the cat-like claws on her front left paw, still uncertain where exactly the voice had come from. A soft smile curled on her lips as she searched, however, liking the game to some degree.

When the speaker finally emerged from the trees, she sat a fair distance away at the very edge of the minor clearing with an eager sort of energy about her that turned that soft smile into a raging grin, her tail thumping against the ground immediately in excitement, for if this woman was excited, it surely meant there was something to be excited about - right? For a moment, Masa admired this stranger with her beautifully glossy fur that practically glowed in the way of a starling's wing, the ghost of stripes and spots breaking up the prismatic effect that sunlight had when it danced off of her coat, though it struck her as strange that she would be darkly colored and yet structured like a very typical kaddain with long limbs and feathered wings. Strange indeed.

The excitement fled as the dark kaddain spoke, her words tentative and cautious as she asked if there was anything that she might be searching for. Masa finally put an end to her grooming and sat still, head tilting as she listed to her and wondered if, perhaps yes, there was something she wanted in particular. Eventually she shook her head, though graciously accepted the welcome with a short bob of her body that was meant to be a bow, just maybe. "Many thanks, darkling, but there's nothing in particular I'm looking for. Perhaps you know of something I <i>should</i> be searching out, however?" Tilting her head the other way, the Djinn shrugged, lounging so her hind legs splayed to the side and her weight rested on her hip, her tail lazily patting the mulch now in a serpentine, wave-like motion.