Vindico

Full Version: The Silent Shadow (Citlali)
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The dark creature would blend in with the shadows of the night as he would weave his way fluidly through the trees. The light of the moon above would reveal his dark crimson markings that nearly blended in with his dark raven coloured pelt. His white pupilless eyes would glow, and his fangs that poked out from his lip would reflect the moonlight almost like they too wanted to glow like his eyes. The male stuck close to the trees, weaving his body through them his twin tails would caress each tree with passing.

He was traveling alone once more, as he always had. He would climb a small hill and seat himself under one of the dead looking trees sitting in the shadows. He would lift his head and gaze to the moon, not to howl but only to gaze at it lovingly. Something about the moonlight brought a great comfort to him. He would grow comfortable under the tree and curl himself into a ball, only his eyes would give him away and he was growing tired.
He lay for some time with his ears alert, listening to the silence around him. He had checked the area for any signs of life; he would be safe to sleep here for the night. He would lower his head delicately onto the ground, letting the silence of the clear night to carry him off to sleep.
Talon would often go a few days without sleep, sleeping was his least favorite activity. His dreams were full of nightmares; but tonight would be the third night without any sleep, he couldn’t go on much longer awake. It hadn’t taken long for the brute to fall into a soundless slumber. The world around him would slip away from him and his breathing would fall in rhythm.

He was in the woods, like these only the trees more twisted. At first he didn’t see anything, but the moon would rise and cast a red light on everything around him. Blood was everywhere, splattered on the trees. The smell was overwhelming; a sense of danger was heavy in the air. Talon’s fur was on end a growl would rumble from his throat. Something was coming for him, death was drawing near he could feel it. He had to run, whirling around he would race through the trees, but would be running in circles. A howl that belonged to a monster only his dreams could conjure filled his ears. He would let out helpless whines mixed with growls of annoyance. He wasn’t a small pup.
“You killed them” A voice cold and monstrous would whisper in his ears.
“Killed who?” His voice would respond confused, angry and terrified.
Something would tug at the feathered necklace making it hard for him to breathe. He clawed at air trying to break free.


As he slumbered his sleeping body would twitch, a growl would rumble from his chest. He would lash out and kick at the air as if trying to run, whimpers would escape. He was stuck in a nightmare unable to wake himself from the terrors within. His one paw getting caught in his feathered necklace pulling and tightening around his neck, his cries would grow louder as he slept on.
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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;">Citlali had remained</font>  away from Promontorium for longer than she had expected to. To begin with, the deer she had been tracking had traveled far before she could catch up to it, and then managed to gallop a good distance into Mactibilis before she was able to pull it down. The end result had been worth it, though, as her belly was now full (a rare luxury) and she had a few caches of meat stored nearby that could hopefully feed her again if times became lean. While dragging home a leg (either to cache near her den or as an apology if Indian took notice that she had been gone so long) she had come across a patch of ageratina herbs, nestled by a murky pond. She had been taken on as a healer--a Tsel-something, they called it--for the Clutch, and figured it wouldn't do to pass up the opportunity to collect a few parcels of the fungicidal herb, just in case. She had been at odds at how to transport it, however (she'd rather not leave a perfectly good shank of venison behind), until she finally devised a solution: she plucked several of the plants and wrapped them in her scarf, which was now tucked securely under one folded wing as she walked. The detour had cost her time, however, and now it was well and truly dark.

She moved quickly and furtively through the shadows, alert for the slightest noise or scent. Rumors said that there was a monstrous beast living here, though she had walked through these woods before without being attacked. Perhaps monsters went for prey that was more likely to put up a fight than she was, seeing no sport in chasing down a weak little mutt. That suited her just fine, though. She already had two monsters in her life, named Cruxer and Lucia. Three would be a crowd.

As if in response to her thoughts, a distant snarl cut through the night, and Citlali froze, eyes widening so much that one would think they were about to pop out of her skull. She looked about, ears and nose twitching frantically as she sought to locate the threat, but nothing appeared. The growls, however, continued, and she could have sworn they were becoming hoarser, higher-pitched. It almost sounded like a wolf, now that the initial panic was no longer clouding her mind. Furthermore, there was almost a pained, panicky note to them. Was someone in trouble? There wasn't much she could do, but simply continuing on seemed unthinkable. Citlali was a yellow-bellied coward, but she wasn't heartless. 

She broke into a trot, still dragging the deer leg, following the yips and growls. As she drew closer to the source, she finally caught the scent of the wolf. Her hackles rose in spiny prickles along her spine as she recognized it to be an Avelorn. It wasn't Cruxer, but that made little difference to her. Even a whiff of that species was enough to set her to shaking fearfully. She wanted to flee then and there, abandoning them to their fate, but for some reason, she chose not to. If there was one thing she had learned living here, it was that cruelty came in all forms. Lucia wasn't Avelorn, yet there were times when Citlali feared her more than she did Cruxer. She figured that, despite this wolf's breed, there was only a fifty-fifty chance it would maul her.

A little more walking finally brought her to the source of the cry. A wolf was lying on the ground, seemingly asleep, yet thrashing about as if gripped by night terrors. She quickly noticed the source of his hoarse cries: his forelimb was tangled up in a feather-and-rawhide necklace he wore, cutting off his air. He was effectively strangling himself. A small, spiteful part of her wanted to leave him to choke, but she didn't have it in her to do something so cold-blooded. She dropped the leg and approached him nervously, clearing her throat. <font style=" color: #a1cbde; text-shadow: 0px 0px 10px #ffffff;">"Hello...?"</font> When he didn't stir, she raised a shaking paw, gave his shoulder a quick smack, jumping backwards immediately like a startled feline. <font style=" color: #a1cbde; text-shadow: 0px 0px 10px #ffffff;">"H-hey, wake up!"</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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The voices were around him this time, faceless voices snarled at him and jeered at him all taunting him it was so hard to breathe. The world in his dreams was becoming darker and darker. His growls disappearing, being drowned out by his whimpers. He would freeze when a small voice could be heard above the jeering voices. It was that of a woman’s a hello barely audible. He frowned drowning out the voices around him listening for that voice again. His body would grow still. A black figure rushed at him all of a sudden screaming as loud as it possibly could. “MURDERER”

Talon would wake when the impact felt real on his person. He would pull his trapped paw free relieving himself of the suffocating pressure. His white pupil less eyes would flash open and wide showing all his fear, his ears would flatten as he would shout in his waking moments.
“I didn’t kill anyone!”He would snap and snarl at the air.
As the dream would lose its hold to the brute his nose will fill with an unfamiliar scent. Another was very close to him. He would freeze almost holding his breath as his white eyes slowly slid to get a good look around him. His eyes would stop and rest on a female wolf cowering not far from himself. She was smaller than himself and had wings made up of both feathers and skin. She was brown in colour with white markings.
Talon would pull himself to his feet, his eyes narrowing to hide his feelings of confusion and fear. The dream still had him a little disoriented. He would rise to stand his eyes glued to the new stranger. His fur a little ruffled from being startled. He wouldn’t speak; he would just watch this stranger. How long had she been here? Was she the one to have woken him? His mind was racing as thought after thought would come crashing into his brain.

A part of him wanted to slip into the night not wishing for any sort of social interactions after his current nightmare, but the other part of him knew that it would be cowardly to flee at a time like this, it also probably wouldn’t help that he just shouted he hadn’t killed anyone. That alone would be suspicious enough to perhaps gain a follower, and he hated to be followed.
So Talon’s solution was to stand still and stare at the new comer, perhaps she will mistake him as a blind lunatic and run away on her own? Talon could still feel his body shake with the shock of the dream, so much for being as still as a statue.
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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;">He reacted instantly,</font> whipping to his feet with the speed of a striking snake. Words tore from his throat, and Citlali scampered backwards, ears flat and tail tucked in fear. He had likely been having some sort of horrible dream, which would have explained the snarling and thrashing. As his wild eyes focused on her, she suppressed a shudder of revulsion at their pale coloring. It was similar to her one blinded eye, though the way his muzzle pointed directly at her dispelled any doubts that he couldn't see. Furthermore, they glowed with an unearthly light that didn't make him look any less frightening. She immediately regretted waking him, and avoided making eye contact, keeping her own gaze towards his paws. She glanced away for a heartbeat to try and figure out an escape route, should he turn hostile. She supposed that Cruxer and Lucia would be camped out somewhere near Promontorium, the better to receive her messages, but she highly doubted they were within shouting distance now. She was on her own, a thought that for once did not make her feel any better.

He said nothing to her, only stood his ground and stared. Her head dropped even lower under his scrutiny. Unlike others, he didn't seem to be staring directly at her wings, which made her feel a bit better. She had expected an Avelorn, of all wolves, to take the most issue with them. The silence dragged on, and Citlali tensed her body, trying to suppress her shaking.<font style=" color: #a1cbde; text-shadow: 0px 0px 10px #ffffff;"> "Um...I thought you were choking,"</font> she tried to explain. Without realizing she was doing it, her voice had slipped into the feather-soft, unobtrusive tones slaves had used around their masters in her birth pack. It was an unconscious reaction to being faced with a potentially-hostile Avelorn.<font style=" color: #a1cbde; text-shadow: 0px 0px 10px #ffffff;"> "You were thrashing around, and your necklace was tangled up on your foreleg, tightening it around your throat. I thought if you woke up, you wouldn't strangle yourself."</font> She took a step backwards, unsure if he was about to snap at her or not. <font style=" color: #a1cbde; text-shadow: 0px 0px 10px #ffffff;">"If...if you don't mind me asking, what were you dreaming about? You, uh, said something about killing."</font> Privately, she doubted that dreaming about killing things was uncommon in Avelorn.


                                            <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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The black male would be silent his eyes unmoving from her. He watched with a blank slate on his face, it would appear this strange she wolf was frightened by him, he could see her shake just ever so slightly as she backed away from him. He wouldn’t say anything, just watch her every movement. She would look away from his eyes and glance about as if looking for a place to escape to. It was clear she knew he wasn’t blind, of course if he wanted her to believe that he wouldn’t have stared directly at her. She was clearly not a threat to him so he relieved himself of some of his tension his eyes would remain glued to her and his face would remain blank and emotionless.

Talon would listen as the stranger would begin to speak, her voice small and soft. It was clear she was scared or at the very least uncomfortable. Talon would listen as she voiced her thoughts. He wouldn’t respond, merely listen. It would appear that this stranger came to his aid while he was stuck in his nightmare; she possibly even saved himself from strangulating himself. Talon would slowly then allow himself to sit back down his twin tails laying half curled around himself.
His eyes watched as she would step back tentively almost like she thought he may cause her harm. He liked this; she would allow him to have his space. He no longer felt her as a threat and by now all tensions he held had eased away from him, his fur would flatten out and his eyes would soften just a little. When she asked about his dream however, his tension snapped right back bringing a frown to his face.
His gaze would shift away from the she wolf as he rose to his feet once more. He could just leave, not having to explain himself the stranger would likely not follow. He glanced back at the frightened stranger and let out a sigh in frustration, he wasn’t a bad guy and he felt a little bad for causing her to cower so much when all he did was wake from a bad dream. He had to face it, she probably saved his life.

“…Don’t shake like a fallen leaf…. I won’t eat you.” He would snap forcing himself to sit back down and look at the wolf, he was gonna have to try harder than that to ease her fears.
“I’m sorry if I scare you… you just… startled me.” He mumbled his frown still in place.
“Thank you for… saving my life, but the subject of my dreams isn’t something I just blurt out to anyone who asks.” He would continue trying to be polite, but definitely coming off as a bit rude.
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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;">He didn't attack,</font> though she did flinch as he finally spoke to her, evidently disgusted with her cowering demeanor. <font style=" color: #a1cbde; text-shadow: 0px 0px 10px #ffffff;">"Sorry..."</font> She tried to force herself to relax and sit as he did, managing to stop herself from quivering. It was a start, at least. A slightly incredulous laugh came from her as he confessed to being startled.<font style=" color: #a1cbde; text-shadow: 0px 0px 10px #ffffff;"> "You startled me."</font> she shot back. <font style=" color: #a1cbde; text-shadow: 0px 0px 10px #ffffff;">"I thought you were going to bite my face off."</font> She could see his overlong fangs glinting in the moonlight, poking out from under his lips. 

He refused to share his dreams, however, and Citlali accepted it with a roll of her shoulders. She supposed she couldn't really expect a total stranger to disclose something like that right off the bat. <font style=" color: #a1cbde; text-shadow: 0px 0px 10px #ffffff;">"Fair enough."</font> Silence fell between them again like a curtain. She shuffled one wing, holding the cloth-wrapped bundle of herbs tight against her side. She had nearly dropped it when she had jumped away from him, and had no desire to scrape in the mud to reclaim them if they spilled out of the scarf. She happened to glance back at the deer leg, lying abandoned nearby. He likely would have noticed or at least scented it by now, and she figured she wouldn't have much chance against him if he decided to fight her for her kill. <font style=" color: #a1cbde; text-shadow: 0px 0px 10px #ffffff;">"Are you hungry, maybe?" </font>she offered awkwardly. <font style=" color: #a1cbde; text-shadow: 0px 0px 10px #ffffff;">"I was able to catch an old doe earlier today, and I was bringing some meat back to my pack's territory. If you need food, though, you're welcome to take some." </font>She nodded over her shoulder at the haunch. He was awfully bony, though she was no different, and she knew from experience that loners tended to have less success when hunting. The thought of giving food to an Avelorn reminded her, somewhat painfully, of her former life, but she pushed the thought away. She didn't recognize this wolf from her home pack, and he was likely one of the first not to be staring directly at her wings, a fact that she appreciated.

She rose briefly and sat down again off to the side, giving him access to the haunch if he desired it. <font style=" color: #a1cbde; text-shadow: 0px 0px 10px #ffffff;">"My name is Citlali, by the way."</font> A respectful nod was given, another remnant of her former conditioning. <font style=" color: #a1cbde; text-shadow: 0px 0px 10px #ffffff;">"Tsel..Tselli...Tselitel of the Caelum Clutch." </font>She wrinkled her nose. <font style=" color: #a1cbde; text-shadow: 0px 0px 10px #ffffff;">"They tell me that it means 'healer', though not in any language I've ever heard."</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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Talon would lapse back into his silent nature watching the winged stranger; she would flinch at his spoken words. He would watch as she tried to seat herself like he had, a little bit of laughter would bubble its way out of her as she admitted that he startled her. Talon’s frown would turn into more of a curious expression. She was a timid little creature, he had expected for her to maybe turn around and go the other way but yet here she was, trying her best to strike a conversation with him.

His white eyes would shift to the deer haunch laying on the ground as she asked if he wanted some. He stomach would give a small rumble as he actually looked at it, it was tempting him like no other. When was it last he ate? He couldn’t quite recall. Without a word he went over to the abandoned deer leg and helped himself to it. His eyes would drift back to the stranger almost lazily, his guard lowered significantly it was as clear as day that she was absolutely no threat to him whatsoever.
His ears would perk a little as she would formally introduce herself. He never asked for a name, what where the chances they would meet again? He could just saunter off without another word to this Citlali creature. He would let out a small sigh, his curiosity over her words were too much of a pull to ignore. She was in a pack; she was a healer of sorts?

“Talon….” He would mumble between bites giving his name.
He would swallow a chunk of meat and look back at Citlali, his white eyes meeting hers.
“I’m Talon Bersek…. I travel alone.” He would say simply, pointing out the obvious.

“What does a…” He would frown as his mind struggled to come up with the word she used before healer. “…Tselli do?” He would ask frowning even more. That wasn’t right.
With a shake of his head he went back to eating the deer leg, devouring the whole thing in his silence, he would straighten himself back up.
“Oh… and thank you.” He would say as an afterthought.
Speaking to others wasn’t something he excelled at, he was sure it was growing more and more obvious as he remained speaking with the small winged woman. He was always more comfortable in silence, so he would slip right back into it as quickly as he could, only giving a couple words here and there.
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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;">Wordlessly, he took</font> the offered meat, gulping it down hungrily. Even though she had been the one to offer it, she felt a bit dismayed at seeing her kill disappearing down the gullet of an Avelorn. Still, it was more of a precaution than anything else. If he was eating that, he wasn't eating her. He stopped devouring the leg long enough to give his name, and state that he had no pack. She wasn't surprised by that, he seemed too closed-off to tolerate socializing with others much. Even now she had a feeling that she was trying his patience. When he asked what she did within the pack, she crouched briefly and opened her wing, letting the scarf-wrapped herbs fall to the ground. She nosed the bundle open, exposing the freshly-picked plants.<font style=" color: #a1cbde; text-shadow: 0px 0px 10px #ffffff;"> "Well, I take care of wolves who are too injured or sick to hunt or fight, and help them get better. My mother was an accomplished herbalist and healer, even had a bit of magic, and she was able to teach me some of what she knew."</font> Her smile took on a noticeable tinge of sadness. <font style=" color: #a1cbde; text-shadow: 0px 0px 10px #ffffff;">"Not the magic, unfortunately. But I can clean out a wound and shorten the duration of a sickness."</font> She lifted a paw and pointed it at the herbs, unconsciously adopting an educator's tone. <font style=" color: #a1cbde; text-shadow: 0px 0px 10px #ffffff;">"These are snakeroot plants, though the 'fancy' name is ageratina. They're good at cleaning out skin infections, particularly of the fungal variety."</font> She closed the bundle and scooped it up once more with her wing. <font style=" color: #a1cbde; text-shadow: 0px 0px 10px #ffffff;">"I figured I'd stop on my way back to the mountains to gather some herbs, in case I needed them."</font> They were stored in a small crevice in the rock near her den, in the pack's mountain rookery. The smell of drying herbs all put together gave her a headache, so she preferred to keep them away from her sleeping area. So far, there had been no real need for them, but if she was going to be a healer, she would need to be prepared.

Silence fell again, punctuated by the ripping of flesh and cracking bone as Talon continued to feast, he finally finished, and stepped away from the leg, which was now little more than bone shards and gristle. She looked at it with raised brows, he must have been starving. She was almost puzzled for a moment as he thanked her, unused to Avelorns being grateful for the meat she brought them. It actually took her a moment to remind herself that it was different now. She was under no obligation to hunt for anyone but herself, at least most of the time. <font style=" color: #a1cbde; text-shadow: 0px 0px 10px #ffffff;">"You're welcome..." </font>

She paused for a moment to study the other wolf, an idea forming in her head. He seemed strong and capable, if standoffish, and Citlali was shrewd enough to know that a newly-formed pack, or one that had recently changed leaders, would be under scrutiny from ambitious loners and packs alike until they could assert themselves. Having an extra set of jaws around to keep their borders secure would be helpful. And, privately, she wondered how much the Madars would really do around the pack. Indian seemed okay, but the others seemed very, very used to high ranks and giving orders. Nevermind the fact that one of them had thrown a veritable tantrum upon learning that a non-Madar was ruling beside Indian. Citlali took measures to keep away from Caracara. <font style=" color: #a1cbde; text-shadow: 0px 0px 10px #ffffff;">"You know, if you're ever looking for a permanent home, I'm sure Caelum would have room for an extra fighter or hunter." </font>She wasn't sure how he would react to the offer, but it wouldn't hurt to at least ask.



                                            <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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The male would listen and watch Citlali almost curiously as she would go on to explain herbs and what she did for her pack. His curiosity would quickly die in his eyes and a blank look that almost looked hurt crossed his face as Citlali would briefly speak of her mother. Talon has no memory of his mother, as far as he knew he was always alone. His eyes softened just a little when he noticed the brief sadness Citlali would show in her small smile. Would have lost her mother? Talon would frown; at least she had a memory of her.

He chose not to ask about her mother not wishing to grow more silly envy over her memories. He would listen as she would continue to explain the herbs she had gathered. Talon would take a step closer to the woman to get a better look at these herbs. They might be something he might wish to remember. He was careful to keep his distance, he had no desire to get up close to this stranger, even if she possessed no threat to him even the slightest.
“Snakeroot… I’ll remember that.” He would mumble taking note of the name of this herb.
The silence would fall between them once more. She would acknowledge his thanks and they were left looking at each other. Talon was growing uncomfortable under her eyes. He only just noticed the one was blinded. He picked himself up and slowly started to move away from the woman, perhaps it might be time to leave.
He would pause a few more moments, and then she would break the silence once more, his white eyes would find her and he would listen to her speak once more. All hostility towards this woman had vanished, he was even a little less rude with allowing her to speak. She spoke about her pack, and asked if he had any interest in going with her. She would say they could use hunters and fighters, and he looked like he would fit those positions.
Talon would sit himself back down and a frown would creep across his face in thought. Did he want to be a part of a pack? He never thought of it before.

“Cit…Citlali was it?” He would ask feeling her name on his tongue.
“I…. I do not think your little pack would want me.” He would say reaching his own conclusion.
Who would want a wolf who didn’t like the company of others? Wasn’t a pack supposed to be tightly knit together? Of course he wouldn’t have any idea what pack life would be like, he might even like it. But at the same notion he might hate it more than anything.
“I don’t know the first thing about playing nice with others…” He would add as an afterthought.
“Besides, I make you as uncomfortable as you make me.” He pointed out.
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          <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;">He considered her</font> proposal for a moment, falling quiet (or rather, quieter than normal). He spoke again, and she raised her head at his voice, then dropped it once more as he turned down the offer. Well, what could she really expect? She barely knew this wolf, and he didn't seem very social at all. In the back of her mind, she had known that the chances of him accepting such an invitation were slim, though she figured it hadn't hurt to ask. Still, she couldn't help but laugh at his next phrase. <font style=" color: #a1cbde; text-shadow: 0px 0px 10px #ffffff;">"Well, these wolves don't exactly play nice. Not with others, at least."</font> She sat back on her haunches, recalling the day Indian had formed the pack. <font style=" color: #a1cbde; text-shadow: 0px 0px 10px #ffffff;">"The very first day we all came together, this one wolf--Caracara, I think her name was--she attacked the lady Indian designated as Queen because she wasn't a Madar. That's their family name, I think. About half the pack are siblings, or half-siblings or something.</font>" She snorted. <font style=" color: #a1cbde; text-shadow: 0px 0px 10px #ffffff;">"I think Andraste was ready to beat her into the ground, but Indian stepped between them before it got too nasty."</font> It certainly hadn't left a good impression on the spotted she-wolf, but she wasn't even considering leaving. In addition to Cruxer and Lucia ordering her to join the pack to spy, she was finding that, however lukewarm it was, she enjoyed the feeling of camaraderie that had been so absent in her birth pack. The Queen was surprisingly kind for someone of royal rank, and for the first time in her life, Citlali felt loyalty to someone who hadn't terrified or beaten it out of her.


She shifted in embarrassment as Talon made it painfully obvious that he had noticed her discomfort being around him. <font style=" color: #a1cbde; text-shadow: 0px 0px 10px #ffffff;">"Sorry, bad habit of mine. I've had...run-ins with Avelorn wolves before, so they tend to make me jumpy." </font>She knew she had no excuse for acting the way she did, and that not every Avelorn was a born killer, but it was a difficult mindset to break (Cruxer wasn't helping things). But as for her making him nervous? She cocked her head, a brow raising incredulously. <font style=" color: #a1cbde; text-shadow: 0px 0px 10px #ffffff;">"I find that a bit hard to believe."</font> she said to him.<font style=" color: #a1cbde; text-shadow: 0px 0px 10px #ffffff;"> "You don't really look like the type to get unnerved, least of all by someone like me."</font> She wasn't really the most threatening wolf out there. Unless...<font style=" color: #a1cbde; text-shadow: 0px 0px 10px #ffffff;">"Or did you mean because I'm a hybrid?" </font>The thought caused her shoulders to roll forward again, hugging her wings to her sides. Citlali, like many of her kind, was adept at discerning a wolf's breed by their scent. Even if he hadn't smelled her mixed blood, her wings (at least in her mind) were a dead giveaway. 


                                            <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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