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Full Version: Two of a Kind [Andraste]
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                       <center><div style="border-bottom: 2px solid #fae58f ; border-top: 2px solid #fae58f ; padding-top: 8px;"><font style="font-family:Ruthie; font-size: 80px; font-style: none; text-transform: none; color: #fae58f; text-shadow: 0px 0px 10px #000000, 0px 0px 30px #ffffff; line-height: 100px; float: bottom; ">Citlali Deerheart</font></div>
                                           </center>          <div style="text-align: justify; font-variant: small-caps; font-family: georgia; font-size: 10px; line-height:8px; word-spacing:3px; letter-spacing:2px; color: #ffffff; text-shadow: 0px 0px 5px #000000; word-spacing: 5px;">                                                </center>         <font style="text-align: justify; font-variant: small-caps; font-family: georgia; font-size: 12px; line-height:12px; word-spacing:4px; letter-spacing:2px; color: #fae58f; text-shadow: 0px 0px 5px #000000; word-spacing: 5px;"><DIV style="text-align: CENTER; font-family: georgia; font-size: 8px; text-transform: uppercase; color: #fae58f; text-shadow: 0px 0px 20px #ffffff; letter-spacing: 7px; line-height: 13px;">Time to fly, time to touch the sky
One voice alone
A haunting cry</DIV>
 
 
<font style=" font-size: 15px; font-style: italic; font-variant: none; text-transform: none; text-shadow: 0px 0px 9px #000000;">Another day, another pack.</font> Citlali hated having to spy on her packmates, channeling information back to Cruxer and Lucia to feed their thirst for knowledge they could use against the "freaks", but at least it gave her the opportunity to play at being a pack wolf, rather than just a slave. It was a hollow pantomime, but it was better than nothing. She also took the time to act upon the flight tips Indian had given her, strengthening her wings and practicing flapping and steering until it was second nature. So far, she was unable to get off the ground for more than a few seconds, but each second was exhilarating to one who had previously been groundbound. Cruxer and Lucia had encouraged her attempts, which puzzled Citlali. She understood that a flying scout would be more useful, but it would also mean she could get out of their reach. For what might have been the first time in her life, a spark of rebellion was brewing within her. She hadn't mentioned this possibility to them, but only continued her training.

She was in a more level part of the mountains, almost a meadow, studded with boulders. She was currently in the process of clambering up one, the action having been repeated many times before. Her paws hurt from her rough landings, but she wasn't even considering quitting just yet. Each time she leaped, flapping madly, she felt as if she remained in the air for just a heartbeat longer. Her ultimate goal was to accomplish something other than a glide. Panting, she finally hauled herself to the top of the boulder, looking down to the ground below. It wasn't nearly as high as the cliff she had been going to jump from when she met Indian, but it was tall enough. Toes gripping the uneven rock, she spread her wings, feeling the wind flow over and under them. She made a few test flaps, waiting until she could feel the breeze building under them. Taking a deep breath, she crouched, gathering her strength into her hind limbs, then leaped, wings spread wide as her paws left the boulder's surface. She downstroked with all her might, attempting to power herself into the sky.

It was a good effort, but not quite enough just yet. She managed a wobbly glide for several yards, until the wind shifted and she felt herself tilt, losing the lift of the wind. She came down heavily, tumbling head over heels in the meadowgrass, then sat up, rubbing a paw over her bruised head with a hiss of pain. Well, that felt like a little longer...
 
 
                                            <center><font style=" color: #a1cbde; text-shadow: 0px 0px 10px #ffffff;">"May I speak?"</font></div>
 
<DIV style="text-align: CENTER; font-family: georgia; font-size: 8px; text-transform: uppercase; color: #fae58f; text-shadow: 0px 0px 20px #ffffff; letter-spacing: 7px; line-height: 12px;">One song, one star burning bright
Let it carry me
Through darkest night</DIV>
 
 
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<center>CODE BY CHIP | ART BY FENNECFYRE
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<center><div style="background: url('http://oi57.tinypic.com/qoc1hu.jpg') no-repeat bottom; width: 650px;"><div style="padding-right: 25px; padding-left: 25px; padding-bottom: 420px; padding-top: 25px; font-family: georgia; text-align:justify; font-size:12px; color: #372e57">It was a day of good weather, and fine winds. The air was sweet with the blossoming breathe of a ripening spring, and to the woman, a moment in time when all fell away, and respectability ceased to be. Sighing, taking the gales deep into her breast, Andrastë rode the surf striking the side of the mountains haul, rising and falling with each heave, a bobbing kite lured by the strength that came from this wild land. It was strange, how easily she fell into the needs that came from a pack, the expectations and the constant need for motion. Even now, the drive to acquire more, to do more had heralded the woman from her bed, far up the mountain sides in search of one thing: meat. The savoury nectar was a constant phantom illusion upon her tongue, a hunger that roused even the most sated of dragons. Perhaps a concoction of angst, brought to life by her seeking eyes, set upon the horizon in search of kin and kinth, and vulnerability that lived at the centre of a packs soul, the queen had soon left her luxury in search of more… trying challenges. The days may have been easy these past fleeting moments, the calling of Indians family to ranks, and those of like mind, but she was ever wary of the potential for trouble. It made her edgy, it made her restless, and most of all, it made her angry.
<p><p>
It brewed there, just beneath the surface, battering at the cage of steel and mithril that insnared the slathering beast. A instinct that came from the unknown and the dreamers. The very reason she found herself now, out along the zyphers, feeling the heat of a rising sun at her back, the muted tones of the land before her, and the spirits giggling in her ear. Her banners were stretched out wide along side her, pulling her weight with ease out onto the pedestal of tomorrow, feeling her body seemingly melt away and cease to be for its interaction with the reset of the world. Her crown craning, ivory horns a beacon set ablaze by the torch above, she twisted down through the layers, her paws tucked against her belly, useless in this particular conflict. Catching the invisible ledge cast out by the rolling rocks, she allowed herself to be pulled along the river, gazing down beneath her in search of fresh meat, something, anything truly to sate the clawing agony of her gut. Andrastë may have been determined, but she was in no means a fool, bypassing the sprawling numbers of a herd of mountain goats below, bejewelled spheres capturing their path in her minds eye, to hold it sacred and pass on their existence to the others once the moment arose. They were high up up the mountain side, grazing on the fragile, toughed stalks of the more resilient flora, safe from the dangers below, a path set only to those capable of meeting the sky. And yet, below, she could see the shadows of the forests, their fingers reaching out, gripping the flatlands that led up to the slopes of the colossal peak. Perhaps she’d have been luck there, below the brush of the clouds.
<p><p>
She’d wheel down multiple levels before her rapid acceleration slowed, floating along on the heavier, cooler air that surrounding the crags. It would be than that she found exactly what she was looking for. Mauve wings holding steady, barely beating a path in their great expanse, Andrastë settled her dynamics, pressing the drag inducing feathers along her collar and back close to her silhouette, the fanning silk of her tail coiling into a fine ribbon, and with that; dropped form the sky. The heat of the thin leather designing her wings pressed close to her shoulder and hip, she ripped through the air with a faint whistle, eyes set on the hare feasting on vibrant herbs, its tall ears twitching at each little sound. Three hundred, two hundred, one hundred feet, the distance fell away, only to backtrack as she snapped open the sails, catching her descent, and swinging her limbs out in front of her. The hooked barbs of her front paws sliced through the plush tan fur, even as her hind legs caught her weight. A swift bite to the back of the creatures neck, and it was over.
<p><p>
Intent on her prey as it was, she barely noticed the sound of shifting rubble. Turning her gaze towards the mountains shadow, her eyes would capture the distressed image of her packmate, a frail, mousy creature she had met on their first gathering. She seemed… ruffled, to say the least. Her wings sprawled out, heavy tarps at her sides. Andrastë, cocking her head, stepped away from the plump rabbit, her own wings furling off the ground to glide through the air at her side, stretching and arching the bones within, the purring muscles brought on by such a sudden fall. <font style="color:#8b72a6;"><b>"My little bird... you seem to have fallen from your nest."</b></font>
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<font style="color:#8b72a6;"><b>Speak</b></font>
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<center><table align="center" background="http://orig07.deviantart.net/21e3/f/2015/091/8/6/citlalimythsummershrunk3_by_fennecfyre-d8o0obm.png" style="width: 600px; background-position: top; background-repeat: no-repeat; background-color: #050a09;">



 
 
 
 
 
 
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                       <center><div style="border-bottom: 2px solid #fae58f ; border-top: 2px solid #fae58f ; padding-top: 8px;"><font style="font-family:Ruthie; font-size: 80px; font-style: none; text-transform: none; color: #fae58f; text-shadow: 0px 0px 10px #000000, 0px 0px 30px #ffffff; line-height: 100px; float: bottom; ">Citlali Deerheart</font></div>
                                           </center>          <div style="text-align: justify; font-variant: small-caps; font-family: georgia; font-size: 10px; line-height:8px; word-spacing:3px; letter-spacing:2px; color: #ffffff; text-shadow: 0px 0px 5px #000000; word-spacing: 5px;">                                                </center>         <font style="text-align: justify; font-variant: small-caps; font-family: georgia; font-size: 12px; line-height:12px; word-spacing:4px; letter-spacing:2px; color: #fae58f; text-shadow: 0px 0px 5px #000000; word-spacing: 5px;"><DIV style="text-align: CENTER; font-family: georgia; font-size: 8px; text-transform: uppercase; color: #fae58f; text-shadow: 0px 0px 20px #ffffff; letter-spacing: 7px; line-height: 13px;">Time to fly, time to touch the sky
One voice alone
A haunting cry</DIV>
 
 
<font style=" font-size: 15px; font-style: italic; font-variant: none; text-transform: none; text-shadow: 0px 0px 9px #000000;">Just as before,</font> her embarrassments had an audience. Citlali had been shaking the dust and pollen from her coat when a rich, authoritative voice rung out nearby. She cringed, looking over her shoulder to see the purple-furred wolf from the meeting standing there.  <font style=" color: #a1cbde; text-shadow: 0px 0px 10px #ffffff;">"Ack--"</font> Citlali let out a strangled yelp, hurriedly scrambling to her feet and facing the other wolf.<font style=" color: #a1cbde; text-shadow: 0px 0px 10px #ffffff;"> "Good day, ma'am..er, your majes--I mean, Rani."</font> She was still trying to understand the foreign-sounding ranks of her new pack. The brown wolf dropped her head, feeling humiliated. The other wolf wore an expression of unabashed amusement. A scrap of brown fur lay by her feet, a freshly-killed rabbit. Just as before, the woman's wings, so similar to hers yet carried with a pride she could never hope to possess, enchanted her. In her birth pack, nobody with mutt-wings had ever held themselves in such a noble fashion. They were marks of impurity, yet this women didn't seem to care at all. <font style=" color: #a1cbde; text-shadow: 0px 0px 10px #ffffff;">"I-I..."</font> She tried to come up with some explanation for why she had been sprawled in the dust like a fool.<font style=" color: #a1cbde; text-shadow: 0px 0px 10px #ffffff;"> "I was trying to fly."</font> She lifted her wings in a short of helpless shrug before pulling them in close, as if drawing a blanket about herself, or as if she was trying to draw them all the way into her body and out of view. <font style=" color: #a1cbde; text-shadow: 0px 0px 10px #ffffff;">"I'm still not very good, though. I think it's because I've only just recently started practicing. I don't have any muscle built up yet."</font> Even if she hadn't been so underfed, it was obvious that Citlali would never become a hulking wolf. In a better world, she would have had the form of an endurance runner, with a broad chest, elegantly-curved spine, and lithe limbs; a body designed to travel, be it by air or land. As it was, she was more reminiscent of a coyote--lean and stick-limbed.

This wolf, on the other hand, looked every inch a warrior. In a way, her wings, antlers, and poise were like a cruel mockery of what Citlali had lost, or would never have. It caused a stir of bitter jealousy within her, though she was too fearful to let it show. This wolf was apparently one of the highest-ranking in the "Clutch", as the pack was called. It wouldn't do to offend her, especially if she was to stay and gather information. <font style=" color: #a1cbde; text-shadow: 0px 0px 10px #ffffff;">"I, ah, saw you at the meeting, but I don't think we've been properly introduced."</font> She bowed her head briefly in submissive greeting. <font style=" color: #a1cbde; text-shadow: 0px 0px 10px #ffffff;">"I'm Citlali Deerheart."</font> As always, the surname she had given herself stung, but that was the intent. It was a reminder of her cowardice, and had she been of a more optimistic mindset, it would have been a call to better herself. If she had not been enslaved so soon after freeing herself, she might have begun working to achieve such a goal.
 
                                            <center><font style=" color: #a1cbde; text-shadow: 0px 0px 10px #ffffff;">"May I speak?"</font></div>
 
<DIV style="text-align: CENTER; font-family: georgia; font-size: 8px; text-transform: uppercase; color: #fae58f; text-shadow: 0px 0px 20px #ffffff; letter-spacing: 7px; line-height: 12px;">One song, one star burning bright
Let it carry me
Through darkest night</DIV>
 
 
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<center>CODE BY CHIP | ART BY FENNECFYRE
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<center><div style="background: url('http://oi57.tinypic.com/qoc1hu.jpg') no-repeat bottom; width: 650px;"><div style="padding-right: 25px; padding-left: 25px; padding-bottom: 420px; padding-top: 25px; font-family: georgia; text-align:justify; font-size:12px; color: #372e57">She was such a shy little fae, a woman without her fire, without the drive to hold herself above that which would chain her down. Andrastë approached the girl as if she was a wild creature, careful, yet with a firm hand, to keep her from flying away at the slightest of breeze. The Stark couldn’t deny she had been interested in the other since she had first seen her, another wolf with the wings of a dragon, their pale skin lined in a strange manner yes, but, the fine talons upon primordial hand all the same. She would watch her, gaze upon the design long held privileged by their people. For to them, the wings were a sign of the blood that flowed through their veins, it was a sign of the ancestors who scaled the roof the world, their long journeys held upon a steady hand and a steady beat. Citlali’s wing span was smaller than her own yes, but than, most of what this wolf was scaled far lower than Andrastë. Perhaps, she was a descent of the forest lineage, those who lived within the pillared halls of the veil. She had never understood them, the odd way their bodies were constructed, the ease upon which they could fly through the forests, evading collision with that sprawling branches. She was a child of the open sky, her wings stretching out an immense six feet on either side. She was meant to travel high above the clouds, riding the untameable currents. She wasn’t as agile as most, but she held an endurance, and a stability in the sky most could never beat.
<p><p>
She’d chuckle when the other stumbled over her words, seeming to fail in capturing what she wished to say. It was a strange title, this rank of queen. She had never heard the word before, and yet, it rang with a purpose Andarstë never quite felt in her own tongue. Perhaps she was growing fond of this culture upon which the Clutch was growing, taking on key titles from a social world much different than her own. Unimpressed with both of the leading Madars, one for her uncontrollable emotions, and another for interruption, she found herself examining the other members that had followed them to the mountains, curious to learn more about those upon which would make or break the pack they had created. Andrastë would put the time forth to make their ranks flourish, yet, she would not do so without first learning if they were worth the effort. <font style="color:#8b72a6;"><b>”Call me Andrastë. We both know who I am in ranks of the pack."</b></font> Mused, the mauve woman stepped forward, her wings outstretched, their surface heated, pumping blood along micro veins, relinquishing the ache of a morning stretch with each passing moment. She noted the way the other held herself, the close tucking to her bodice. Submissive. Subservient. It was an interesting draw to her past, the possibilities of what could have made her that way. The winged kind tended to be more free spirited, more demanding of their own purpose. Call it the kin of the sky.
<p><p>
Yet, it seemed this little bird had never learned to fly. Cocking her ears, Andrastë would take notice of the lack of care in the burnish wings, their skin frail and chalky, lacking the lustre that commonly touched a tended leather. The arm of her wing was far to think to care the weight of the canvas, leaving her with little doubt the woman could barely manage a timed glide. Andrastë, reminiscent of a true Ealith held all her weight in her chest. She housed lengthy limbs, their strength bunched at the muscle along the solid bones, leaving her seeming meatier than most, trimmed down of absolutely every ounce of unnecessary weight. Her shoulders were wide and bulky, the pistons of her wings housed along the tendons cast by an interact structure of lopping ribs, broadened by the natural pull of their sheer size. It was obvious she was a creature meant for the hunt, meant for the open sky. She was the type that could ferry herself through raging hurricane, and make it to the other side. A type of physique the other should have carried. humming, she would step forward, circling around slowly, examining the lay of the scaffolding beneath, looking for what may yet find purpose in an untuned engine. <font style="color:#8b72a6;"><b>”There is always time to learn… Show me,"</b></font> she’d beseech, stepping back, her crown tilted back towards the slopes above.
<p><p>
The queen knew she would not allow this neglect to continue. A child of the sky, damned to the earth? A terrible fate. She’d pause when the other offered greeting, swinging around in her steps to face the other, her tail writhing like a living thing behind her, chin tilted back and she looked upon the other. Her expression would soften, just a hint, and a smile would grace her onyx lips. <font style="color:#8b72a6;"><b>”No I don’t believe we were. It moved far to fast. I am called Andrastë Stark, daughter of Titus Stark."</b></font> She always believed their name suited them. Viciously clear, set as they were in all that they did. They were a different thing amongst their people, a lineage that heralded itself more than what they were destined for. To be a Stark was to know what you wanted. To know what was worth fighting for. It calmed all who bore it, a chain, as well as freedom. Looking to the other, she could see Citlali fell to the power of her own name, whether by choice or forced upon it, she did not know. Cocking her head, the woman would turn around, her eyes tracing the slopes, seeking the safest way up for a flightless bird, such as her company. <font style="color:#8b72a6;"><b>”Come along than."</b></font>
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<font style="color:#8b72a6;"><b>Speak</b></font>
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Meep: sorry for the wait x.x
<center><table align="center" background="http://orig07.deviantart.net/21e3/f/2015/091/8/6/citlalimythsummershrunk3_by_fennecfyre-d8o0obm.png" style="width: 600px; background-position: top; background-repeat: no-repeat; background-color: #050a09;">



 
 
 
 
 
 
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                       <center><div style="border-bottom: 2px solid #fae58f ; border-top: 2px solid #fae58f ; padding-top: 8px;"><font style="font-family:Ruthie; font-size: 80px; font-style: none; text-transform: none; color: #fae58f; text-shadow: 0px 0px 10px #000000, 0px 0px 30px #ffffff; line-height: 100px; float: bottom; ">Citlali Deerheart</font></div>
                                           </center>          <div style="text-align: justify; font-variant: small-caps; font-family: georgia; font-size: 10px; line-height:8px; word-spacing:3px; letter-spacing:2px; color: #ffffff; text-shadow: 0px 0px 5px #000000; word-spacing: 5px;">                                                </center>         <font style="text-align: justify; font-variant: small-caps; font-family: georgia; font-size: 12px; line-height:12px; word-spacing:4px; letter-spacing:2px; color: #fae58f; text-shadow: 0px 0px 5px #000000; word-spacing: 5px;"><DIV style="text-align: CENTER; font-family: georgia; font-size: 8px; text-transform: uppercase; color: #fae58f; text-shadow: 0px 0px 20px #ffffff; letter-spacing: 7px; line-height: 13px;">Time to fly, time to touch the sky
One voice alone
A haunting cry</DIV>
 
 
<font style=" font-size: 15px; font-style: italic; font-variant: none; text-transform: none; text-shadow: 0px 0px 9px #000000;">Andraste took her</font> fearful stuttering with cool forgiveness, adopting an easy, informal tone. Citlali wasn't sure if that made her feel better, or just worse. However, she was certainly starting to enjoy serving under leaders who seemed to regard their ranks as privileges, not rights. She had been raised to believe that Avelorns were the superior wolves and Ellyrians inferior by blood: a simple, indeniable fact. It was this blood that made one caste fit to rule, while making another fit to serve. That any Avelorn in power deserved to be there, regardless of their actual disposition, had been a fact of life, as obvious as the sky being blue. She was only recently learning how to adjust her thinking to this new land, where wolves had to prove themselves worthy. Even with this new freedom, it was unlikely that Citlali would ever be a high-ranking wolf. She simply wasn't designed for it. All she needed to be content was a warm den, a meal, and a job to do. She had offered to become a healer for multiple reasons. First and foremost, it was one of the few things she was useful for. As far as she knew, none of the others of the Clutch knew what she did (though even that really wasn't much). It was something she could take just a bit of pride in. Second, though she hated to even think about it, knowing the health of the pack would provide her with information she could relay to Cruxer and Lucia. It turned her stomach, but at the end of the day, Citlali's primary concern was for her own survival. She only hoped she could sustain it without others coming to harm, but she wasn't holding her breath. Finally, it was a way of honoring her dam's memory, and not letting her knowledge go to waste.

Andraste stepped towards her, and immediately Citlali stiffened, tail curling itself up between her hind legs. She remained still as stone as Andraste circled her idly, a placid, tuneless hum lilting from her chest. Citlali wasn't sure what the Rani could be looking for. Prickles ran up and down her spine as she realized that the queen's most intent looks were directed towards her wings. She was comparing them, possibly, to her own wings. Citali ducked her head in shame, waiting for the little examination to be over. All Andraste was going to find was disappointment. The Queen finally stepped away, urging her for a demonstration of what she did know, higher up in the peaks. The dun wolf swallowed, unsure. Part of her liked the idea of having someone to help her learn, especially someone with the same kind of wings, who would know exactly how to use them. But what if she only succeeded in making a mockery of herself? She liked Andraste (as much as a kicked dog could like anyone) and wanted to make a good impression. Flailing her wings and falling on her face didn't seem like a good way to go about it.

With a quiet sigh, she fell in behind the Rani as they made their way up the mountainside. She gave her full name, and Citlali's heart twinged at the mention of fathers. She wondered what Andraste's relationship had been with her sire, but didn't ask. It was probably better than hers had originally been. As she walked, she lifted a paw briefly to brush against the carmine-and-white scarf she wore, remembering both mother and father. Lost in memory, she hadn't realized she had slowed until Andraste urged her onwards. She trotted to catch up, though she slowed again before she was side-by-side with the dark-purple wolf, assuming a respectful following distance.<font style=" color: #a1cbde; text-shadow: 0px 0px 10px #ffffff;"> "There should be a sort of flat-topped cliff not too far from here,"</font> she said, looking about and recognizing a few landmarks. <font style=" color: #a1cbde; text-shadow: 0px 0px 10px #ffffff;">"Might be a good place to practice. That's actually where I met Indian for the first time."</font> She laughed quietly. <font style=" color: #a1cbde; text-shadow: 0px 0px 10px #ffffff;">"I was trying to force myself to fly by jumping off the cliff edge. It was lucky I chickened out, else I would have landed directly on his poor head."</font> She looked back at the Queen, her expression a peculiar mixture of caution and curiosity. <font style=" color: #a1cbde; text-shadow: 0px 0px 10px #ffffff;">"If it's all right for me to ask...how did you meet Indian?"</font>


                                            <center><font style=" color: #a1cbde; text-shadow: 0px 0px 10px #ffffff;">"May I speak?"</font></div>
 
<DIV style="text-align: CENTER; font-family: georgia; font-size: 8px; text-transform: uppercase; color: #fae58f; text-shadow: 0px 0px 20px #ffffff; letter-spacing: 7px; line-height: 12px;">One song, one star burning bright
Let it carry me
Through darkest night</DIV>
 
 
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<center>CODE BY CHIP | ART BY FENNECFYRE
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<center><div style="background: url('http://oi57.tinypic.com/qoc1hu.jpg') no-repeat bottom; width: 650px;"><div style="padding-right: 25px; padding-left: 25px; padding-bottom: 420px; padding-top: 25px; font-family: georgia; text-align:justify; font-size:12px; color: #372e57">The child was shy, so very insecure with herself. The very existence was a soft shadow of what could be, the way in which she spoke, the manner in which she kept behind, rather than falling to her side. Submission had never been a thing Andrastë understood, being a child born of high ascent, a creature meant to hold a high position in life, be it as a politician, a warrior, or a prized breeding stock. The last was hardly something she would ever accept, holding far to great a need for things both grander and freeing. Starks were of the open air, the taste of things others never had the courage to grasp. Perhaps one day she would bare a scion of her own, but it would be a secondary thing, one that would come when the time was right, and the proper sire rose from the ranks. After all, her father side their family only associated themselves with the best the world could offer. Chuckling in memory, her own thoughts drifting away as she made the mindless motions to climb the stone, the mauve woman remembered the games set forth by her kin when someone came to claim one of her fathers daughters, females born from the lesser women of his harem. Bitches without say to their own fate. They, unlike Andrastë, had never sought their own path, content to let their good breeding offer them a suitable partner, ones accepted by the patriarch, whether it be one of his generals, or a noble bastard who had won his way into the ranks. They had been prizes to go to the highest bidder; a fate she hated more than death itself.
<p><p>
Andrastë from the start had been a favoured child, if only for the origins of her mother. A Fellborn, a wildling from the mountains far to the east, free folk her father had long sought to add to his collection of followers. Her mother had been rumoured to be the most beautiful, and the most savage of the daughters to the clans chieftain, a society in which men and women fought for their freedom side by side. Perhaps her father had stumbled upon her, perhaps he had raped her in the night, leaving her broken and carrying a child who would never be accepted by the clans. Or perhaps, like the stories went, Titus had offered her something in exchange for her genes, for a season later, after the bitter chill of Yule had passed, Azrael had come to the Starks citadel, her belly swollen with the twins, and bore them beneath the howling screams of a early storm. Abbadon and Andrastë had been born from her struggles, and yet, the day to follow, Azrael had vanished, back into the mists of Avalon, where her children had never seen her again. Instead, they had been nursed by a woman who’s children had been killed, far to unacceptable to be worthy descendants of Titus Stark. They were of the dragon blood, their wings the colour of pale shadows of a failing sun, their feathers the one thing dearest mother had left them before returning to the world of her own.
<p><p>
Maybe this child had a better story to tell of her own origins, and yet, looking at the pitiful picture she made, Andrastë doubted she was offered any such affection. What parent would leave their kid bound to the earth, easy pickings. Creatures such as them were not meant to walk the endless roads, the dirt beneath their paws, the earth of stone scorching each step. Looking towards the other, her chin pressed into her shoulder, the woman watched the slight give of tension upon the girls face, a gentler look that spoke of easier times. She seemed to like Indian, which was a good thing. It made her less likely to betray him, a sour story she was all to familiar with. And yet, she would make one move more, and ask what had brought her here, brought her to the mans side. A smile curled over her lips, a sharp look, one made by the teeth of a shark, an expression the other would miss, as she had turned to clear a gorge cutting through the ground. <font style="color:#8b72a6;"><b>”We met when I made to keep him from drawing to close from something I claimed as my own. I of course had no intention of staying put to converse with him, yet, somehow, that is what exactly occurred. Something must have gone right, because on our very first meet he asked me to be his queen. Interesting fellow he is for sure.”</font></b> Halting suddenly, she turned towards the other, looking back over her shoulder to gauge the height. <font style="color:#8b72a6;"><b>”This will do fine.”</b></font>
<p><p>
Hopping up onto the flat ledge, she paced away from the girl, giving her a chance to come up. <font style="color:#8b72a6;"><b>”How much do you know about flying?”</b></font> she’d call, her own wings fanning out, beating them softly to straighten out the lengths. The talons glinted bright against the plum, the edges curling slightly as she swung around to face the downhill slopes. It wasn’t to great a fall, an allowance for the other if she should lose her focus. It would hardly do for her to take a tumble that would break anything important.
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<font style="color:#8b72a6;"><b>Speak</b></font>
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<center><table align="center" background="http://orig07.deviantart.net/21e3/f/2015/091/8/6/citlalimythsummershrunk3_by_fennecfyre-d8o0obm.png" style="width: 600px; background-position: top; background-repeat: no-repeat; background-color: #050a09;">



 
 
 
 
 
 
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<link href='http://fonts.googleapis.com/css?family=Ruthie' rel='stylesheet' type='text/css'>               
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                       <center><div style="border-bottom: 2px solid #fae58f ; border-top: 2px solid #fae58f ; padding-top: 8px;"><font style="font-family:Ruthie; font-size: 80px; font-style: none; text-transform: none; color: #fae58f; text-shadow: 0px 0px 10px #000000, 0px 0px 30px #ffffff; line-height: 100px; float: bottom; ">Citlali Deerheart</font></div>
                                           </center>          <div style="text-align: justify; font-variant: small-caps; font-family: georgia; font-size: 10px; line-height:8px; word-spacing:3px; letter-spacing:2px; color: #ffffff; text-shadow: 0px 0px 5px #000000; word-spacing: 5px;">                                                </center>         <font style="text-align: justify; font-variant: small-caps; font-family: georgia; font-size: 12px; line-height:12px; word-spacing:4px; letter-spacing:2px; color: #fae58f; text-shadow: 0px 0px 5px #000000; word-spacing: 5px;"><DIV style="text-align: CENTER; font-family: georgia; font-size: 8px; text-transform: uppercase; color: #fae58f; text-shadow: 0px 0px 20px #ffffff; letter-spacing: 7px; line-height: 13px;">Time to fly, time to touch the sky
One voice alone
A haunting cry</DIV>
 
 
<font style=" font-size: 15px; font-style: italic; font-variant: none; text-transform: none; text-shadow: 0px 0px 9px #000000;">It was likely</font> fortunate that Citlali would miss the other's humorless grin, as it would have only served to put Citlali on edge for the rest of the meeting. Still, there was an ever-so-slight edge to Andraste's tone that kept Citlali from asking any more questions about it. She did find it strange that Indian would offer up such a rank to a complete stranger (as they had been strangers at the time) but she didn't pretend to understand the minds of the ruling class. Strength recognized strength, she supposed. <font style=" color: #a1cbde; text-shadow: 0px 0px 10px #ffffff;">"That he is,"</font> she said quietly, following the other wolf up the trail. When they came to an abrupt stop, Citlali nearly ran into the other wolf, managing to stop herself before she collided. She looked at her curiously, then looked about at their surroundings. Andraste was ascending a nearby ledge, and Citlali followed after her, clambering up to the top with both her paws and her thumb-talons.

The other wolf asked what she knew about flight, and Citlali shuffled sheepishly. <font style=" color: #a1cbde; text-shadow: 0px 0px 10px #ffffff;">"Not much, I'm afraid. I mean, I know the basics, just from watching others," </font>She extended her own wings, though they weren't brandished nearly as proudly. <font style=" color: #a1cbde; text-shadow: 0px 0px 10px #ffffff;">"I know you usually have to get a running start, and you flap to keep yourself up in the air." </font>She looked over her shoulder at her hindquarters.<font style=" color: #a1cbde; text-shadow: 0px 0px 10px #ffffff;"> "I don't have any tailfeathers to steer, so I guess I'd tilt my wings to bank."</font> She had some of the technical knowledge, but that was it. Even if there was some ancestral, instinctual memory of flight within her, she had no idea how to access it aside from jumping off a cliff and hoping for the best.<font style=" color: #a1cbde; text-shadow: 0px 0px 10px #ffffff;"> "I am willing to learn, though."</font> As she waited for the lesson to begin, her eyes strayed from Andraste over to the edge, and she swallowed. It wasn't very far to fall, but it was still enough to make her a bit dizzy. She spread her stance slightly to keep herself from swaying, though it did little to lessen her nervousness. 

At the same time, though, a tiny ember of hope flickered in her chest. Could she really learn how to use her wings? If she had the sky, wolves like Cruxer and Lucia couldn't control her. She could be truly free, she could be a real member of the pack, rather than a traitor. It was wishful thinking, and she doubted everything would work out so well, but she hoped all the same. 

 
                                            <center><font style=" color: #a1cbde; text-shadow: 0px 0px 10px #ffffff;">"May I speak?"</font></div>
 
<DIV style="text-align: CENTER; font-family: georgia; font-size: 8px; text-transform: uppercase; color: #fae58f; text-shadow: 0px 0px 20px #ffffff; letter-spacing: 7px; line-height: 12px;">One song, one star burning bright
Let it carry me
Through darkest night</DIV>
 
 
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<center>CODE BY CHIP | ART BY FENNECFYRE
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<center><div style="background: url('http://oi57.tinypic.com/qoc1hu.jpg') no-repeat bottom; width: 650px;"><div style="padding-right: 25px; padding-left: 25px; padding-bottom: 420px; padding-top: 25px; font-family: georgia; text-align:justify; font-size:12px; color: #372e57">Her toes sinking into the cracking earth, sun dried by the relentless heat above, Andrastë took a moment to merely revel in her place within the world. The sweet whispers of the air, hushed and tantalizing, pulling at her fur and offering the secret language of the sky to her ears. Had she been younger, the woman would have entertained the thought of a speech to the sky all its own, a sacred word shared only amongst those who hailed from beyond the flat rock they call home. The fantasy had left the game with age, yet, all the same, the concept of knowledge in the wind was a constant. There was much to be learned when she listened, tasted, and felt the gales, her body turned to devour it all, ears rolled forward, crown held up and away in a regal manner, the seductive grace of whisping air around the joints of her wings. It was warm, moist in a way that promised a good shower to come, clinging to each surface and leaving a tangible blanket wherever she turned. It was heavy, suitable for a girl who needed a little bit of help when it came to taking flight for the first time, substance for her wings to grasp and claw at as they forced her body into the air. Glancing to the side, Andrastë hummed, taking note of the lengths of her wings when she unfurled them from her sides, the odd dewclaw fastened to the front edge. They were shorter, and would need the added lift caused by the winds to help her up, and not down. Luckily for Citlali, the currents rolled up the sides of the mountain like invisible waves, pushing and tugging at her cheek where she gazed over the ledge.
<p><p>
Her attentions turned to the girls words, taking note of the offered concepts.<font style="color:#8b72a6;"><b>"I wouldn't worry too much on flapping wings right now. Yours are too weak yet to bear your weight. Keep in mind, that every time you flap, your forcing your weight further into the currents, and fighting against the head winds to bring them up. It'll just be a drain your energy. Instead, work on gliding for now, it'll help strengthen them and grow accustomed to holding your body aloft without the added stressors of fighting the wind."</b></font> Cocking her head, she glanced towards the others shoulders, humming as she thought of ways to help this fledgling get out of her nest. <font style="color:#8b72a6;"><b>"I would also suggest a few exercises to help with your endurance. Try upward strokes from a standing position. Running starts are useful, but they won't always be possible, especially up here with such narrow ledges."</b></font> She'd offer and example, pushing off the ground with her hind legs, even as she brought her own wings down in a powerful stroke, taking her body off the ground for a moment, sinking down again after, their lengths outstretched. <font style="color:#8b72a6;"><b>"This will help build your muscle, and you won't have to worry about crashing because you can do it on flat surfaces."</b></font>
<p><p>
<font style="color:#8b72a6;"><b>"As for taking off... don't flap your wings either. It's a much more exerting way to go about it. Instead, find a place with enough height, and let yourself drop off the edge. The currents rising up will catch your fall. As you grow stronger you'll be able to do kick offs. I shall show you how once you master your exercises."</b></font> Turning towards Citlali once more, Andrastë gestured her closer, her right wing folding in against her body to give space for the woman.
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<font style="color:#8b72a6;"><b>Speak</b></font>
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<center><table align="center" background="http://orig07.deviantart.net/21e3/f/2015/091/8/6/citlalimythsummershrunk3_by_fennecfyre-d8o0obm.png" style="width: 600px; background-position: top; background-repeat: no-repeat; background-color: #050a09;">




 
 
 
 
 
 
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<link href='http://fonts.googleapis.com/css?family=Ruthie' rel='stylesheet' type='text/css'>               
      <div style="padding: 30px 35px 20px 35px; padding-top: 450px;"> 
          <div style=" padding: 30px 35px 10px 35px; background-color: rgba(12, 26, 17, .4);">
                       <center><div style="border-bottom: 2px solid #fae58f ; border-top: 2px solid #fae58f ; padding-top: 8px;"><font style="font-family:Ruthie; font-size: 80px; font-style: none; text-transform: none; color: #fae58f; text-shadow: 0px 0px 10px #000000, 0px 0px 30px #ffffff; line-height: 100px; float: bottom; ">Citlali Deerheart</font></div>
                                           </center>          <div style="text-align: justify; font-variant: small-caps; font-family: georgia; font-size: 10px; line-height:8px; word-spacing:3px; letter-spacing:2px; color: #ffffff; text-shadow: 0px 0px 5px #000000; word-spacing: 5px;">                                                </center>         <font style="text-align: justify; font-variant: small-caps; font-family: georgia; font-size: 12px; line-height:12px; word-spacing:4px; letter-spacing:2px; color: #fae58f; text-shadow: 0px 0px 5px #000000; word-spacing: 5px;"><DIV style="text-align: CENTER; font-family: georgia; font-size: 8px; text-transform: uppercase; color: #fae58f; text-shadow: 0px 0px 20px #ffffff; letter-spacing: 7px; line-height: 13px;">Time to fly, time to touch the sky
One voice alone
A haunting cry</DIV>
 
 
<font style=" font-size: 15px; font-style: italic; font-variant: none; text-transform: none; text-shadow: 0px 0px 9px #000000;">Andraste advised against</font> flapping, and Citlali had to agree that her wings likely weren't strong enough for true sustained flight yet. She nodded, a bit nervously, as the purple wolf suggested gliding instead. It didn't sound quite as exciting, but you had to walk before you could run. Why not glide before you fly? 

She watched as Andraste demonstrated an exercise she could do, downstroking her wings to lift herself into the air briefly. Citlali's breath caught in her throat at how Andraste seemed to float in the air for a few seconds before gently coming back down. Could she ever possess such grace? It was something to aspire to, at least. Back in her former life, Citlali had sometimes wondered if she'd even be able to fly at all with her wings, even if she hadn't been forbidden from learning how to do so. Maybe there was something fundamentally wrong in their structure, something that prevented hybrids from flying in the first place. But here was living proof that her worries had been wrong. Andraste may not have been a hybrid, but her wings were almost just like hers, and she used them like a master. It was something to aspire to, at least. She stepped away and opened her own wings, trying to mimic what Andraste had done. A few rapid flaps brought her toes off the ground for a second or so, but that was it. The dun wolf dropped her head, feeling discouraged, but tried to console herself with the fact that nobody started out a master. She just needed to work at it, was all.

She listened as Andraste explained how to take off in a glide. Don't flap, ride the wing, let herself drop. That last one made her nervous, but she figured there was only so much damage she could do to herself at this height. She swallowed, turning back to the cliff edge. <font style=" color: #a1cbde; text-shadow: 0px 0px 10px #ffffff;">"All right..."</font> She approached the void, extending her wings as far as they would go. In the future, when she was more proficient at flying, she would discover that her short-yet-broad wings would make her adept at quick turns and banks, and their smaller span would allow her to dodge and weave in enclosed spaces, such as between trees. Out here in the open, however, they were more of a hindrance than anything else. She inched her way up to the edge, gripping it with her forepaws. She sent a mental prayer to the heavens (not that she really expected the Gods to care) and jumped, holding her wings wide.

She expected to plummet like a stone, but instead, she felt an odd sensation--the wind was filling her wings like sails, bearing her up as she soared onwards. She couldn't believe it.

She was flying.


A whoop of sheer joy tore from her chest as she kicked out with her legs in excitement. Unfortunately, that movement proved to be her undoing. She wobbled, and when she attempted to correct herself, she practically felt the wind's lift slip out from under her wings. Now she plummeted, the whoop becoming a yelp of fear. She managed to gain some air again just before she hit the ground, cushioning her fall enough to avoid breaking anything. Citlali stuck out her legs, attempting to land, but tripped and tumbled, rolling a few times before coming to an abrupt upside-down stop against a large boulder. Groaning, she lay there for a moment, waiting for her head to stop spinning, then attempted to right herself into a sitting position. She had some scrapes and bruises, but nothing too severe. 

Well, it was something.

 
                                            <center><font style=" color: #a1cbde; text-shadow: 0px 0px 10px #ffffff;">"May I speak?"</font></div>
 
<DIV style="text-align: CENTER; font-family: georgia; font-size: 8px; text-transform: uppercase; color: #fae58f; text-shadow: 0px 0px 20px #ffffff; letter-spacing: 7px; line-height: 12px;">One song, one star burning bright
Let it carry me
Through darkest night</DIV>
 
 
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<center>CODE BY CHIP | ART BY FENNECFYRE
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<center><div style="background: url('http://oi57.tinypic.com/qoc1hu.jpg') no-repeat bottom; width: 650px;"><div style="padding-right: 25px; padding-left: 25px; padding-bottom: 420px; padding-top: 25px; font-family: georgia; text-align:justify; font-size:12px; color: #372e57">Andrastë had never been a particularly admirable teacher. She didn’t have the patience to guide and nurture the minds of the young and inexperienced. She didn’t have the desire to aid those that needed help. For the woman dressed in mauve, there was only those talented enough to kick start their own destinies, and those that weren’t worth the effort to loan advice to in the further of desires. However, she also knew that if she was to acquire any sort of respect at all in this pack, being the awful blunder that had occurred during the first day, she would have to offer a helping paw or two out to those that formed this pack. They were to be members of their ranks anyways; it would hardly do to have an incompetent flyer who was perfectly capable of doing so waste valuable resources. So she would took a moment from her hunt to help this girl, bright eyes watching as the other stepped up to the plate to attempt the goal set before her, and while she may not have pulled it off with flying colours, she was able to get off the ground, and land without making a fool of herself. Which was… admirable given her lack of experience and lack of proper tutelage prior. Smiling, her own wings tucked against her sides, familiar weight of aged canvas upon skin, Andrastë tilted her head, tasting the air before turning back to the other. <font style="color:#8b72a6;"><b>”Do not be discouraged Citlali. That was a good attempt for your first time doing the exercise. It’s a higher ranking skill to be able to get off the ground without a running start. The fact you could get off the ground at all on your first try is a good sign to your future success."</b></font>
<p><p>
And while Citlali was a beginner in almost every sense of the word, her dedication was what truly made Andrastë genuinely wish to help her. She wanted to be better and so she tried. Fear of the unknown, or fear of the ground was the worst possible enemy of creature of the sky could possess. For while the endless heavens were their dominion, the horizon was ever turning, shielding from view future dangers and goals that would change the course they flew. Perhaps it was the instinct, the yearning to fly that drove the ashen girl on, or perhaps it was some hidden past that made her want to break away from the chains, but whatever it was, it drove her to the ledge, and gave her the push necessary to step off even though her scent tasted of fear. Tilting her head, the Stark tracked the girl, watching as she fell lower and lower, and yet, her fall slowing, until for those fleeting moments, the caged bird was flying, wings stretching through the bars rippling with the sun warmed air. A sharp grin, one pleased and amused at the same time with the sheer joy that echoed from the sparrow, Andrastë allowed herself to join in on the flight, her own wings effortless taking her from the ledge, riding the zyphers to lazily glide down towards the others set direction.
<p><p>
It was a slow thing, something that rose up with the subtle whistling in the wind below, forced to change course from an obstacle that wasn’t there before. Looking down, she could see the wobble, and winced, knowing what was to come, but knowing she would make no move to stop it. It wasn’t that she wanted the other to feel the pain, it was more a necessary evil that she would need to learn, and it was something that no one else could teach her. How to catch herself when the wind abandoned her. It happened, even to the most experienced flyers, the wind giving out beneath the wings, and plummeting the rider far from their perch in the sky. It was a terrifying experience, one that Andrastë had experienced for herself not long after her first flight. She had managed to catch herself, which was lucky, as the fall would have killed her had she not. Unluckily for Citlali, her wings weren’t yet strong enough, nor did she have the height needed to make the correction, but she fell into instinct, and the fall had been slowed enough not to break anything. A few bruises, both of the body and ego, but she would survive. Chuckling, folding her right wing, Andrastë made a rapid descent back to earth, her tail swinging out behind her to balance her turn, and with a pull at her spine, brought her hind legs out to catch her fall, even as her wings flared out, touching down with a soft thump. She landed a few feet from the other, cocking her head as she approached. <font style="color:#8b72a6;"><b>"You handled that rather well. A little more altitude and you might not have crashed at all."</b></font>
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<font style="color:#8b72a6;"><b>Speak</b></font>
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