Five Feathers and a Friend [Private]

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Five Feathers and a Friend [Private]

Post by Evangeline Topclaw on Sun Sep 08, 2013 9:03 pm

Five Feathers and a Friend
July, 19, Yr. 04
Manehattan Harbor, Off Shore
Midnight

Just off of the coast of Manehattans harbor, a steam ferry chugged along, guiding it and its occupants. The black waters below creeped on with no bottom, tarnished white with the crashing wake of the bow. The ferry was about ten meters wide, and the bow was flat with the deck, giving clear view of the cityscape's lighting just in the distance.

The occupants of the ship were all in varying states of awake, in anticipation of the coming hour's dock. Most had brought their baggage to the fore of the ship, griffons of varying occupation, mostly professionals from the North looking for opportunities abroad.

Saphire was almost alone, deep in the stowage of the vessel with her temporary Keeper, a shadowy Griffon from the north who she'd not recalled the name of yet. She contemplated disturbing him, but opted to just nudge him gentley with her claw.
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Re: Five Feathers and a Friend [Private]

Post by Kestrel on Sun Sep 08, 2013 10:03 pm

As the gryphoness' talon touched her Keeper's limb he stirred and gave a silent nod to her. He was awake. He wore a weathered and threadbare cloak of a deep grey, concealing most of his intimidating frame from view. What was revealed gave no solace to a potential onlooker though. The gryphon, whoever he was, wore a mask beneath his hood; hiding away his face and identity even further.

To say that Evangeline Topclaw's Keeper was a talkative gryphon would have been a lie. He rarely spoke at all, and even then only as much as was needed. His Equuish was rough, broken, moreso pushed out than allowed to flow as his tone seemed to desire. T'was a new language to the Keeper's mature mind, one of odd sounds and cheer. Different than the native tongues of his people.

He was learning fast however.

Questions about his purpose, mission, or past were left unanswered more often than not. Questions of his habits, actions, or lack of language skills were answered swiftly and calmly. His actions, whether it be writing in his journal, letting his pet Raven out to stretch her wings, doing a bit of exercise or mediation, were always preformed silently and fluidly. It was...dissonant, how calm and collected the griffon was. 

Unnatural.

All at once the bowels of the ship would begin to shake as the Horn above deck sounded their impending arrival at the port. Calm as ever the Gryphon cocked his head to the side, his Raven came in to land at his shoulder; barking a greeting to Eva and its Master. 

"Come. We are near." the Keeper said, standing up and motioning the younger one forward with his left limb. That was another odd thing about the Keeper...he always kept his right arm hidden away. A glance at it showed he was wearing SOMETHING over it...but his constant state of concealing dress made it hard to see exactly what that something was.

Such a strange griffon...such a strange griffon indeed.
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Re: Five Feathers and a Friend [Private]

Post by Evangeline Topclaw on Sun Sep 08, 2013 10:32 pm

A horn bellowed up from the belly of the ship, startling Sapphire. She watched as Kestrel rose, and beckoned her forward, and she nodded, silently accepting his orders. Her father couldn't of found a better keeper- one who'd never raise his voice, never strike without necessity- but one who'd keep Sapphire in line for the entire voyage. The child, a chick only ten years of age, was named for the brilliant hue of blue that colored her plumage. Neither her parents had words for it, and neither knew of any blood in their reckoning that could have lended to her coloration. She had a pleasant enough face, and a straight beak. She'd be a pretty hen, if she lived that long.

To say Sapphire was a trouble child would be an insult to troubled children everywhere. Her mother, fed up with the brat, shipped her off to the GK. After a few years, the authoritarianism of her father did little to change her ways.

Now she was coming back- not wanted in either home, but at least she'd be with her mother, where she 'belonged'. Kestrel was a necessity. Anyone who knew Sapphire for longer then a month would refuse to sit in a cramped ship with her for the entire duration of the voyage- but Kestrel was a stranger almost- a known but an unknown; a family connection with an eye on the voyages to Equestria had singled out the griffon, who'd agreed to escort Sapphire for a sum.

Her mother had been called a blood-thinning whore- Sapphire had been an abomination to her fathers bloodlines.

Sapphire carried a purse with her. 600 Griffon Crowns- that was the price that Evangeline had accepted to take back the burden. As Sapphire followed Kes through the hollowed decks of the wretched ferry, she clutched onto the purse like a doll. The purse would get her mother to take her back. Sapphire teared up at the thought of meeting her mother again.

Sapphire felt emboldened by the thought of no longer needing to ride alongside Kestrel- and for the first time in the voyage she spoke directly to him. "What were your parents like?" The ship lurched slightly as she awaited a reply from the cloaked figure. He was fearsome, but having been around him for so long did a little to diminish his frightening demeanor. After all, there had to be something behind the mask. He probably just wanted to look scary so he wouldn't have to get in fights with the people who'd run away.
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Re: Five Feathers and a Friend [Private]

Post by Kestrel on Sun Sep 08, 2013 11:12 pm

The massive griffon shifted as the boat lurched, his bulk fluidly flowing as he compensated for the sudden jerk. A moment later he was moving again. A jingle of coins behind him caused him to give a mental chuckle, which in turn was silenced by the little ones question.

Memories, carefully nurtured and aged, played before the griffon. His parents had been intresting folk. Teaching him the ways he knew until he was of age, then supporting him in his advancement as he passed through the ranks to eventually become shaman. His father was a Hunter, a Warrior. A gryphon of action and blood. His mother was a preistess, one of healing and wisdom. They had sown the seeds for Kestrel's growth. Showing him there was more than just a single path to this world. They shaped him. Nurtured him. Supported him. Just as Water guides the stone.

"Water." he said looking down, his tone just as eerily calm as ever. "Like water."
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Re: Five Feathers and a Friend [Private]

Post by Evangeline Topclaw on Mon Sep 09, 2013 12:10 am

The chick pondered the tercel's words as they plodded silently through the bulkheads. They approached the stairwell to the deck-level, when suddenly they were accosted by some unscrupulous rapscallions.

Three of them in all, hidden behind the cover of the bulkhead. "Slowly lift your arms up," one demanded with a muffled voice. One of them brandished a crossbow, but the other two had rusted-over knives that they held at talons length. All three of them were rough looking griffons, had probably been stowing on board without tickets- and now apparently they were robbing Sapphire and Kestrel.

Sapphire lifted her arms quickly, dropping the bag of bits with a thunk.
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Re: Five Feathers and a Friend [Private]

Post by Kestrel on Mon Sep 09, 2013 11:50 am

Kestrel had already slipped in front of Eva by the time he came to realize what was going on. A glint of steel, and the creak of a string making him slow and cast his gaze on the three before him.

Three griffons, far smaller than he, wielding three weapons. Two knives and a crossbow. They were attempting to rob him? Harm Evangeline perhaps?

My these three were not the most intelligent were they?

The three would find that unlike Evangeline her protector was not at all phased by the potential risk of physical harm. His mass dominated the hall with a cold grace, the air of a true predator rolling off of him as he stared down at the three of them down. Not that he truly had a choice in the matter, there were few alive as large and built as Kestrel was, and these three were certainly smaller.

Already he was planning what to do, an eerie almost supernatural fog in his eyes hiding any thoughts he could be having from the would-be attackers. It was as if time had simply...stopped about the griffon; allowing him time to watch and plan.

Slowly he looked at each of the would be attackers. Even in the lower light of this hall Kes could identify their features, their weaknesses. The two with knives held their blades like children, terribly out of balance. The state of their weapons only furthered the Hunter's observation that they were new to this. They'd let the weapons rust.

Southern Kingdom gryphons. A Northr would have never allows such to happen.

The crossbowman behind the other two clearly misunderstood his weapon. In such tight quarters such a weapon was limited. Bolts needed time to accelerate. Even if he hit Kes, the griffons armor, currently hidden beneath his encompassing cloak, would  most likely soak up the blow and stop it from sinking too deep. Kes would still be able to attack. To kill.

"Let us pass." the massive cloaked griff said; tone never once shifting from its signature calm. It carried no malice. No fear. T'was more a request than anything honestly.

A request that if ignored would end in the possible death of three fellow griffons.
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Re: Five Feathers and a Friend [Private]

Post by Evangeline Topclaw on Tue Sep 10, 2013 5:37 pm

The two with knives pressed closer, keeping keen eyes on Kestrels hidden arm. "We know you got coins on you, just pass them up and we'll make sure you get out of this alive big fella," the one with the crossbow requested. "Alternatively, we'll kill you and get the coinage anyways; it's not like I care either way."

The hallway was just narrow enough to force the two approaching griffons into arms-distance from each other. Likewise, Kestrel and Sapphire had only been able to walk adjacent to each other due to her small size and proximity to his side. The hallway branched off in three directions near the stairwell, and the griffon robbers had come from that route.

Behind Kestrel and Sapphire, the room with the bunks was adjoined on either side by a hallway that also stretched out to the sides. Sapphire thought of running to those halls, but the leader of the group cut that idea down- "Don't dare try to run or you'll be dead faster then you can reckon."
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Re: Five Feathers and a Friend [Private]

Post by Kestrel on Tue Sep 10, 2013 6:50 pm

As the two closed in the massive gryphon continued to watch and track them silently. Their form was off, they moved far too weakly. There was no aggression in the actions, they did not wish to strike or kill and they made this obvious. Their worst mistake however was something much simpler.

They'd both advanced together, and were now side by side.

The Keeper saw his chance and took it. "Look away."  he said to Eva, moving as if to grab the purse from beneath his cloak. T'was no coin-purse that he claimed however. A coin-purse did not strike like lightning, with a honed edge, and keen precision. A coin-purse did not split the sinew and skin with silken ease, ending life with a single simple touch. The Ulak in the Keepers hand did however. And that was what he'd grabbed in place of the money the would-be robbers wanted. 

It had been simple. Easy. Too Easy even. The angle had been perfect for his strike. All he'd had to do was grab the weapons hilt then draw it forward in a wide arc. The path would cross the throats of both griffons before him, and just as it always had been they'd have no chance to stop what came next. The shock of death was one few ever could feel and escape from. It was doubtful they would have the energy to do anything aside from gurgle weakly and stare in horror before dropping.

Of course if they did try and stop him the Gryphon had years of experience against far greater foes to hone his muscles memory. Disarming the two would be easy, ending their lives with the lash of his talons, stab of the Ulak, or a quick snap of the neck would be even easier. 

The crossbowman would have only the option to watch as this unfolded. With those three dominating the hall before him a target would be hard to acquire, the horror of watching your friends fall could throw off his aim, or perhaps it was what happened next that would stun him and make him listen.

With all the calmness he'd had before he'd struck the Keeper turned his attention to that last member of this would be robbery and spoke; his tone unchanged despite the carnage.

"Let us pass."
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Re: Five Feathers and a Friend [Private]

Post by Evangeline Topclaw on Wed Sep 11, 2013 1:26 pm

And indeed- the two banditos thralled about, grim countenances as they, in vain, clutched as their crimson spilled onto the floor. The lifesblood left them swifter then it came to them, and though they desired life more then anything they'd not live to see another pulse of their own hearts. The blood besmirched the hallway- coating Kestrel; coating the walls; coating the blade that'd fell'd them.

Kestrel wasn't halfway through his speech when the crossbow-griff pulled the trigger. The bolt made a tell-tale "thock" as it left its wooden apparatus, sailing on inertia and spin alone towards the towering tercel. The bolt's aim was poor, but in these confined areas the bolt didn't have to be dead on- a leg or arm would suffice to allow a followup kill.

It was no quandary before the Kestrel- he'd either dodge or take the bolt that assailed him. The little one, Sapphire, screamed loudly at what was unfolding before her. She dove for her cash purse and bolted down a nearby hallway.
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Re: Five Feathers and a Friend [Private]

Post by Kestrel on Wed Sep 11, 2013 9:28 pm

It was instinct that drove Kestrel onwards now. Instinct that made him ease his head to the side, the bolt flying just beyond, tearing through his cloak and flying harmlessly down the hall only to impact with a metallic clatter. 

T'was little more than muscle memory that caused the Keeper to draw his own 'crossbow', Fenrir, and take aim at the other panicked attacker. With a bark Fenrir spat out its payload, a full two foot expanse of sharpened steel, and sent it flying with just as much if not more force than the crossbow that the other had used.

In the end it was simple kinetic energy that would end it all. Like a deer caught it headlights the last of the three would barely have the time to realize what was happening before the bolt smashed into his forehead, sending his neck flying back with a sickening pop of cracking bone and the wet splatter of fresh vitae. Dead. A single bolt having pierced and ruptured the cranium. Painless. Swift.

More than the attacker deserved.

Silent as death Kestrel slowly lowered his weapon, tucking it away and then prowling forward again. He stepped over the two before him, ignoring the blood. Never once this entire fight had he flinched, never once had he even so much and blinked. He'd just smiled. Not a crazed, psychotic smile, but a calm one. A peaceful one. Even as he pulled his bolt free from the skull of the crossbow wielder, and slid his eyes shut with a low prayer. Even as he did the same for the other two then moved to wipe his talons clean and then move along towards the direction that Sapphire went to gather her up and move along again.

He just smiled. Calmly, serenely, smiled.
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Re: Five Feathers and a Friend [Private]

Post by Evangeline Topclaw on Thu Sep 12, 2013 2:54 pm

The hallway was quiet save for the the creaking of the boat. The griffons were dead, and could make no objections to the silence. A corpse never had any objections to how you positioned it, how it was disposed of. A corpse was just dirt waiting to happen, and the manner in which the corpses clutched at the floor clearly displayed their desire to be of the Earth once again.

But the living weren't of this Earth. Sapphire certainly wasn't. She clutched at a token of the Earth in the form of the coins; but she was a creature of the Air, with a spirit of the Fire. She wanted to live, and so she fled from the Kestrel who'd just brought death into her frame of reckoning.

Sapphire found herself at a dead end. She was overlooking a railing, trying to discern a means of climbing onto the deck above.
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Re: Five Feathers and a Friend [Private]

Post by Kestrel on Thu Sep 12, 2013 4:09 pm

Like a specter the Keeper wisked about the halls, following the distant clangs and the scent of fear and effort. Sapphire was running and her Keeper was hunting. She was, for the moment, prey, and Kestrel excelled at finding his prey.

Passing around a corner Kestrel finally came upon the little one. She was looking around desperatly. Trying to find a way up to the decks above. Panic must have blinded her. Kestrel saw no less than five ways to go from here.

He spoke.

"Come child." he said in that unsettlingly peaceful whisper of his, motioning towards the decks. "It is safe. We may pass."
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Re: Five Feathers and a Friend [Private]

Post by Evangeline Topclaw on Fri Sep 13, 2013 12:52 pm

Kestrel had appeared noiselessly behind Sapphire. The child had clambered up onto the railing, and reached upwards to the one above when she noticed Kestrel there. To the impressionable young griffoness, he appeared like the boogie monster, an unfathomable specter of fear and death and the unknown.

Sapphire tried to pull herself up to the deck up above but her arms were too feeble to drag her entire weight up. And in that moment it occurred to her. The way up was gone- there was no way forward. Time had froze as her brain's fight or flight response gradually took hold of her reactions- adrenaline rushed to her brain.

She leapt from the balcony, and flapped her wings-

The weight of gravity pulled her down, and she didn't get too far. Sapphire smacked into the water below and sunk like a rock.
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Re: Five Feathers and a Friend [Private]

Post by Kestrel on Fri Sep 13, 2013 4:55 pm

Had begun to pad silently forward as the child attempted to climb her way up to the next deck, only to find there was no purchase to be found. He was just about to reach her when she leapt.

At first all seemed well. The little one was flapping her wings and trying to fly...but she was failing. Perhaps it was the panic, perhaps she'd just never learned, but it became quite clear as she began to fall that she was not going to be able to glide to shore.

The action came without thought or fear. Kestrel' leapt over the railing after her the instant he heard that dreaded splash. He saw her vanish beneath the waters just as he tucked his body into a dive. Unlike the little one he'd knew how to fly and so too did he know how to swim. Knowledge rarely taught it'd seem to those outside the Northr lands. No matter. He knew what he had to do. He had to dive, grab the child, and pull her to the surface. Quickly.

A task that was going to be quite difficult considering The Griffons current load out and state of dress.
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Re: Five Feathers and a Friend [Private]

Post by Evangeline Topclaw on Mon Sep 23, 2013 7:50 pm

Sapphire felt herself being tugged down to the waters below, the weight of her purse slowly pulling her into the murky depths below. She saw flashes of movement in the water- then realized these were her own flailing limbs, and the wake of bubbles they caused when she swung them.

The black tendrils of the low lying weeds reached up, grabbing arms and clasping hands, begging, demanding from her. And now Kestrel was above her, his grasp too demanding from her. The water was well below freezing, and Sapphire... her grip of things was diminishing. The weight of the purse drifted off from her hands, into the clutching fingers of the weeds below. Sapphire felt lighter.

Sapphire came up with Kestrel to the surface. She gasped for air and began screaming.
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Re: Five Feathers and a Friend [Private]

Post by Kestrel on Tue Sep 24, 2013 9:33 pm

Getting the young-ling had proven almost too much for the massive hunter. He refused to show it however, merely gasping as he sated the burn in his lungs as he brought himself and the gryphoness to the surface of the frigid sea.

They needed to go. This water was far to cold. His body could take such terribly biting temperatures...but the child could not.

"Relax child. Safe. You safe." The Hunter forced out, trying to calm the little one as he looked around for a place to go. Ship. Ship. Ship....THERE a dock. T'was far from them, but he could swim it. Doing what he could the gryphon braced the little one with a forelimb and kept her head above the waves. He would suffer the lack of air as he swam. He would suffer the aching of the creeping cold. He'd felt worse before and his mission was to get the little one home.

He would not fail in this mission. No matter how Nivali* tried to pull him back into her embrace.
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Re: Five Feathers and a Friend [Private]

Post by Evangeline Topclaw on Wed Sep 25, 2013 3:30 pm

Sapphire watched as she was dragged across the surface by the powerful strokes of the Hunter. She thought she could see the spot where her purse had sunk. Her head was becoming fuzzy from the chill of the harbor, and she was having trouble controlling her breathing, which had become shallow and rapid.

Her coat and feathers were drenched in the icy water; she was shaking, whether she knew it or not, and her beak was chattering. The arm that held her was steadfast in grip. She heard Kestrel say something, but couldn't make out what it was. She was moving again, in the water with Kestrel, but the ocean had started becoming this distant thing. It was almost like she wasn't in the same pond as he- she was floating off, into the land of numbness.
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Re: Five Feathers and a Friend [Private]

Post by Kestrel on Wed Sep 25, 2013 7:22 pm

One. Two. Breath. Kick. Kick. Breath. So the rythem of the gryphons powerful strokes went as he slowly drug himself and his charge across the harbor. He could feel her shaking, hear her chatters. She was slowly going limp.

Not good.

Kestrel knew what was happening. He'd seen it all before. She was starting to suffer from hypothermia. If he didn't get her out of this sea now she'd be lost to it. Doing what he could the Hunter tried to keep the little one awake. Shaking her, jostling her, cooing and trilling out in the Old Tongue. Anything to keep her conscious.

*SMACK* Ow.

In his eagerness to keep the little one awake the Hunter had accidentally driven himself right into one of the heavy ties of the dock. "Stay awake child. Do not sleep." Kestrel said shaking the little one again. How was he going to do this? His mind, unlike the child, was keen and focused still and soon a plan formed.

With a grunt of effort and a hard shove Kestrel lashed out with his gauntlet-clad hand, the talons of his once hidden right forelimb digging deep into the boards of the dock. Next came his back legs, first one, then levering himself up with a hiss he pulled up his other. If it all went well he'd have himself up on the dock, belly down, his free  limb gripping tight to the body of the little one.

"Up. up." the Hunter said, pulling the little one with all his might up onto the doc. It wouldn't be nice. The little gryphoness might even get some splinters from all this...but it'd get her out of that damned water. And right now that is all that mattered.
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Re: Five Feathers and a Friend [Private]

Post by Evangeline Topclaw on Fri Sep 27, 2013 12:24 am

Rivers of water poured off of Sapphire as she breached the surface of the water and dangled in Kestrel's grip. She clung to his talon with rigid fists, though it was no conscious effort on her part that allowed her to grip him- the cold had forced her to ball her talons in their entirety, and Kestrel's arm had just happened to be there. Although, in her youth, he wasn't entirely out of her first plumage, her talons were still sharp, and had whether Kestrel had noticed or not, she'd have drawn blood from his arm.

Sapphire was dead weight as she came out onto the pier; although she was shivering terribly, which was probably a good sign. Her oily plumage had mitigated to a degree, the amount of water that could penetrate to her skin, but her talons and lion-parts weren't feathered, forming an imperfect seal against the cold that was sucking the life out of her.

Her breath was feeble in comparison to the strength of the Hunter.
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Re: Five Feathers and a Friend [Private]

Post by Kestrel on Fri Sep 27, 2013 9:48 pm

Kestrel could indeed feel his lifes-blood oozing from the few wounds that the Evangeline had inflicted upon him. That was no concern to him. Flesh healed. Blood coagulated. Life did not return however, and right now the little one beneath him was very quickly loosing hers.

Twisting his head around the Hunter sought out his next destination. He had to warm her up. Fire. He needed fire. Sharp eyes as cold as the void pierced the brick and steel of the docks. There. An flickering amber light in the far alleyway. Fire. That would do.

"Come child. You will be warm soon."

Kestrel told the little one, pulling her up and putting her on his back. Unlike her his coat and plumage was both fully grown and well cared for. Should she pull herself close enough she would feel the slight warmth bleeding off him. It was not much, what with his cloak and armor still in the way, but it was something.

Seemingly without care the griffon rushed into the alleyway, his eyes trained on the light of the fire before him. There was a body there, curled in the shadows, hidden away. Weak. Shivering. A vagrant perhaps?

He'd find out soon enough for in a flash of shadow and silver the gryphon came into the warm halo of the fire. Reaching back Kestrel gently pulled the child around to sit in front of him. Careful not to let his gauntlet clad hand touch the little one, the gryphon began to carefully rub her down. Trying to warm her up. Between this and the fire she should soon be starting to warm herself.

At least...that's what Kestrel hoped.

As all this was going on the gryphon would be keeping his eyes on the body of the other griffon here. Watching. Scanning. Learning. Preparing just in case they were foolish enough to try something. The Hunter wanted no further bloodshed this day, but one wrong move and the gryphon would paint the bricks a sickly shade of red.
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Re: Five Feathers and a Friend [Private]

Post by Kroll on Sun Sep 29, 2013 11:30 pm

Not to far from the alley The Hunter resided in staggered a dark gray griffon that reeked of a strange menagerie of filth, burned feathers, pet food, and just a hint of vomit. This griffon, who went by the name of Kroll, had been living on the streets of Manehatten for the past few years since a little incident involving operational security the murder of his boss.  As if late, Kroll had been slinking around the harbors, checking on some of the the many "cat traps" he had set up since his displacement, hoping he would at least get one meal today.  

This cat trap in particular was a crude dummy that vaguely resembled a griffon when slumped in the shadows, and was stuffed with cat treats and a few bells to entice any strays that may have been aloof. Kroll even planned ahead and lit a fire so he could cook whatever was trapped on the spot, assuming anything showed up. 

However, when he rounded the corner of the alleyway, The transient froze. A large, black griffon sat few feet away from him, eclipsing the fire almost entirely. To Kroll, this meant one of two things: that either his trap was a success and this other griffon was enjoying the fruits of his labour, or, this griffon was cold, and was only seeking warmth. Though it was the middle of the night, it was also the middle of June, leading the griffon to deduce the former of the two theories to be the case about this mysterious being of the night.

Sizing up his potential foe, Kroll felt that the odds of any potential negotiations would bow in his favor if he brought his crossbow into play, and reached for where he normally kept it. Though his heart rate had gone up considerably, the griffon only acknowledged his fear when he grasped air instead of the stock of his crossbow. Having never lost track of his weapons , Kroll was about to undergo a brief fit panic when he remembered that he had his crossbow confiscated earlier that day by some Guerrillas when they caught him using it to "intercept" messenger birds to use as food.

This revelation inspired Kroll to let this one go. He had other traps to check on anyway before the night was done. After giving the mysterious griffon a silent rude gesture with his claws, the transient moved on, stalking off into the dark.
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Re: Five Feathers and a Friend [Private]

Post by Kestrel on Thu Oct 03, 2013 8:12 pm

The vagrant near the dumpster continued to just shiver as he slept. He was of no threat. Wait a moment. The Hunter narrowed his eyes, taking a slow breath. The griffon in the shadows there did not smell right. No filth, decay, or sweat. It smelled of...catnip? Another inhale. Yes, catnip. T'was no griffon at all then but some form of bait.

The Hunter immediately went on the alert, eyes flicking to the shadows, and ears open for any new sounds. If there was bait, then there was no doubt a trap nearby, and a trap always led back to a hunter.

For a scant few seconds the world seemed to just crawl by as the Hunter scanned this would be hunter. It seemed like he was wrong....there! A shift of fabric and the subtle click of something on the stones. Hooves? No. Hooves sounded different. They made dull, sudden thuds, like the pounding of a drum. This was lighter. A sharp sound. One not unlike the sound his own talons made when touching down against the stones of his homeland. A griffon then.

The shadows parted just enough and Kestrel could start to make out the one in the shadows. He'd kept back luckily enough, trying to approach from the rear. Out of the ring of stronger shadow just beyond the light of the fire.

"Stranger." The Hunter called out, his eerily calm voice stained only by age and the wisps of his native Northr accent, while his head turned to face the one behind him. A single golden eye piercing the shadows with unerring precision. "Pardon me for this intrusion. Allow me to warm myself and my charge, and I will be gone."
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Re: Five Feathers and a Friend [Private]

Post by Kroll on Fri Oct 04, 2013 3:29 am

Kroll froze as The Hunter spoke, really wishing he still had his crossbow on him. Slowly turning around, the transient faced the Northr griffon, squinting at him inquisitively as he stayed mindful to keep a good distance away. "Perhaps your coat isn't as thick is it looks, brother, but it's a midnight in the thick of July. You couldn't possibly be cold enough to use my fire and scare off dinner..."
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Re: Five Feathers and a Friend [Private]

Post by Kestrel on Fri Oct 04, 2013 7:29 pm

The Hunter seemed to smile at that...or was that a trick of the light? He himself, as previously stated, had felt much colder temperatures than the bay just a few dozen meters away. The child he held clutched to his chest, who he continued to try and warm, was not as resilient though. "It is not I that needed warming." The Hunter said checking over the little one for a moment before glancing back at the other gryphon.

Mentally the Hunter noted the other's mention of dinner. So the fake-gryph was a trap for him to gather scraps then? A shame. None should be pressed to find food, pony or Gryphon. It just so happened that Kestrel had some spare food on him. T'was a bit wet at the moment, not to mention heavily preserved...but he'd be happy to offer it in turn for letting him use the fire and for a bit of information.

"Kindness begets Kindness. I've some food to share, should you want it Stranger. In return I am in need of some information."
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Re: Five Feathers and a Friend [Private]

Post by Kroll on Sat Oct 05, 2013 3:14 am

Kroll frowned when he saw the griffon smile, feeling that he was being patronized in some way or another. All the same, if this fellow was offering food for answers, then perhaps it wouldn't hurt to help the mysterious stranger. "Alright then, brother..." murmured the transient as he stretched his lower jaw. "What do you want to know?"
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Re: Five Feathers and a Friend [Private]

Post by Kestrel on Sat Oct 05, 2013 4:19 pm

Turned back towards the fire as the Stranger behind him agreed. Good, that would make things much easier. Hopefully. "3548 Booklyn Crossing" Kestrel recited, his talons moving into his cloak to gather something unknown as he let the words hang. "How would one go about getting there? Without drawing attention to oneself."
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Re: Five Feathers and a Friend [Private]

Post by Kroll on Sun Oct 06, 2013 2:06 am

Kroll raised an eyebrow at the griffon as he heard the address it was seeking. "The tea shop on the Main Street? I would think they'd be closed by now I'm afraid..." the transient paused to scratch the back of his head. "But for the easiest way to get there, go in a stiff arch: Turn right on Clover, left on Hamentie, and the...hrh, what was it...the third or fifth right of Mavenstay, I think. Alley's a bit cramped, and the only way out is up if you're boxed in so watch it...I already checked the dumpster there today, they usually have some of the unsold junk from the previous day, but nothing around this time..."

Kroll paused again, shuffling his wings to shake any bugs out. "What did you say you needed to get there for again?"
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Re: Five Feathers and a Friend [Private]

Post by Kestrel on Sun Oct 06, 2013 6:14 am

The Hunter had the directions memorized almost as soon as the other gryphon finished giving them. He had his path...now he just had to make sure his purpose was ready. Giving the little one leaning against his chest a tickle with his talons Kestrel attempted to rouse the little one from her shock. A grunt, a groan. Anything to show she was still conscious and ready to move along. He also had a question to answer.

"I've a task to complete." he said in that eerily calm way of his, his other hand coming free of his cloak. Grasped between the glinting steel of the Hunters right hand was a bag of some kind, a rather large one at that. With a flash of sliver it was offered out to the gryphon still behind him. How odd, that his flesh flashed in such a way, no? Then again t'was not flesh that gleamed so in the light of the flames, but the unnatural metal of the gryphon's gauntlet. It's bindings had come somewhat undone after the quick swim and efforts from before leaving a few fingers to glint in the firelight.

Just staring at that metal, one could feel the temperature dropping. Each glance leaving behind a sense of foreboding and a piercing chill that touched down to the bone; all for no determinable reason. 

"Kindness begets kindness." The Hunter said, his lone eye coming about to focus on the gryphon behind him; the bag held out in anticipation.
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Re: Five Feathers and a Friend [Private]

Post by Kroll on Sun Oct 06, 2013 5:39 pm

Kroll started to approach The Hunter when it held out the bag, but stopped when he saw the metal of the gauntlet reflex the light of the fire. Despite the current temperature and the thickness of his coat, the transient suddenly felt help that maybe getting close to the fire may not be too bad of a thought.

There was something about this peculiar griffon that Kroll didn't like, and whatever that metal object it had made him trust the shadowy fellow even less. "Just place it on the ground in front of you and walk around it, brother...I'll take it from there."  Said the transient, shuffling his wings again in slight agitation.
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Re: Five Feathers and a Friend [Private]

Post by Kestrel on Mon Oct 07, 2013 3:15 pm

Beneath the safety of his hood and cloak the Hunter perked a mental brow. Slow to trust this Stranger was. Kestrel humored the gryphon however and set the food down before himself. Checking the little one one final time Kestrel found that she was sufficiently dry now. Though seemingly she was still unconscious. Hmm...he'd need to carry her then.

Shifting about the gryphon carefully moved the little one onto his back, and stood up to his impressive full height. Turning back he gave the Stranger a final nod and began to walk away, intent on following the path laid out for him. "Spirits guide you Stranger." The gryphon offered just before vanishing into the shadows of the alley beyond.

He had quite a walk ahead of him.
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Re: Five Feathers and a Friend [Private]

Post by Kroll on Mon Oct 07, 2013 9:21 pm

Kroll slowly strafed past the other griffon as it walked out of the alleyway, never once taking his eyes off of the stranger until it vanished into the night once more. Once the visitor was out of his sight, the transient focused his attention towards the bag, his stomach and curiosity beginning to get the better of him. As he cautiously opened the bag, Kroll hoped that The Hunter was being sincere in his efforts; he'd had long day, and the last thing he wanted was poisoned food.
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Re: Five Feathers and a Friend [Private]

Post by Kestrel on Tue Oct 08, 2013 3:27 am

The Hunter carried his charge silently, bearing her weight as if she were nothing more than a slip of paper upon his back. The Strangers directions seemed perfectly good. A few times he had to wait as he let a patrol pass by, or some other vagrant shuffle through a bin, before he could move on, but all that aside the trip was going well.

Back with the Stranger, the gryphon would be happy to find the bag that Kestrel had presented to him was full of a nice sampling of dried, salted meats. They'd gotten a bit wet from the unexpected dip in the sea, but otherwise all seemed well. In fact, the meat seemed to be fresh! No poisons, toxins, tricks, or teasing here. Just boar, deer, and a few other bits that would prove enough to fill a stomach for a while and ease the pangs of starvation.
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Re: Five Feathers and a Friend [Private]

Post by Evangeline Topclaw on Fri Oct 11, 2013 10:52 pm

Sapphire's arms clung to Kestrel, and her grip tightened on him as she slowly returned to waking. The griffon had done a good job of shielding her from the cold. She noticed that they were walking down an alleyway. "I'm sorry for running away," she said to Kes.

"Are we in Manehattan now?" she asked her protector, apparently settled down since her flight from the ship.
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Re: Five Feathers and a Friend [Private]

Post by Kestrel on Fri Oct 11, 2013 11:35 pm

Kestrel had felt the little one stirring long before he heard her apologize. He offered a silent nod to show he accepted her apology before responding to her other inquiry. "Yes." he said pulling out of the alley and starting to move towards another. 

He was almost there now. Just a few more streets to cut across and alley ways to slink down before he would be on the appropriate street.
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Re: Five Feathers and a Friend [Private]

Post by Evangeline Topclaw on Sun Oct 20, 2013 9:33 pm

The griffoness's thoughts shot back to the bag of bullion that'd sunk into the port's waters. "What if mommy doesn't take me?" she asked, hoping the strong griffon might have good advice.
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Re: Five Feathers and a Friend [Private]

Post by Kestrel on Mon Oct 21, 2013 2:17 pm

Kestrel at first didn't respond to that. T'was a difficult question. The gryphon could not offer the little one sancturary, he had no home to call his own yet, should the little ones mother reject her. Why said mother would reject her child was beyond the Hunter however. 

In his culture a child was a precious thing, and only very rarely was a member of a family cast out. Even Kestrel, despite his odd gifts and life, was accepted and loved by his family. Even when he'd left to explore the world, they'd accepted and supported him. To banish ones own flesh and blood...he could not understand that.

"She won't little one." the big hunter assured, darting across the final street and entering into the last alley before his destination. It'd been smooth sailing thus far...hopefully that would remain.
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Re: Five Feathers and a Friend [Private]

Post by Evangeline Topclaw on Fri Nov 08, 2013 12:51 am

Sapphire took solace in the tercels words; but she was experienced enough to know a hollow promise when she heard one. She followed Kestrel closely, hoping that this panned out for her.

"I think we're almost at the place, sir."
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Re: Five Feathers and a Friend [Private]

Post by Kestrel on Sat Nov 09, 2013 9:12 pm

Nodding silently the Hunter agreed with his charge. Indeed they were. The last alley to dart down was a rather simple one. If one that was rather cramped. Dumpsters, overflowing with refuse of various kinds, dotted the length of the alleyway. The ground itself also covered in various puddles and dips; the occasional sheet of paper of other simple city trash blowing about in the slight breeze.

Almost there.

Should all go well, Kestrel would be exiting the alleyway, charge in tow, right in front of Eva's mother's teashop. From there it was but a few more feet until he could push open the door and finally complete this mission of his.
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Re: Five Feathers and a Friend [Private]

Post by Tisis Antony on Mon Nov 18, 2013 2:50 pm

Sapphire approached the tea shop with a measure of trepidation but followed in Kestrel's movements in course. The tea shop was unlatched and came upon with a tug at its handle, ringing a little bell Sapphire stepped in, getting out of the cold- a small wood stove was heating the room in its corner, and she naturally hovered close to this. She looked back to see if Kestrel was coming in, but before she could check, there was a creak on the stairs.
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Re: Five Feathers and a Friend [Private]

Post by Kestrel on Mon Nov 18, 2013 4:06 pm

Kestrel followed the little one as she opened the door, his silent foot falls easing his bulk up and into the room beyond. Beneath his hood the gryphon studied all he saw. Taking in the layout of the room, the scent of tea, smoke, and embers. His gauntlet clad hand teased along the floor. Worn in, but well kept. This was a place of frequent visitation. 

Then there was a creak at the stairs. In an instant the gryphons unsettling gaze flickered towards it, intent to find out just who had made that sound. Perhaps it was the little ones mother, come to welcome her child home. Perhaps it was another. Whoever it was Kes stood poised and ready to either greet or gore them with a serene smile.

Always with a smile.
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Re: Five Feathers and a Friend [Private]

Post by Evangeline Topclaw on Fri Nov 22, 2013 1:00 pm

A pair of talons padded slowly down the steps, a pair of paws following in their wakes. A griffon form flowed down the stairs above them, a mottled mix of blacks and browns. She paused on the steps and tried to adjust her sight to darkened room below. "Who is that? I've got a gun-"
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Re: Five Feathers and a Friend [Private]

Post by Kestrel on Fri Nov 22, 2013 4:06 pm

As the voice called out Kestrel remained silent, his eyes having already adjusted and letting him get a good long look at the one who was supposedly hostile. He did not see, nor hear, a gun in the others movements. Guns were rare in this time. Expensive, loud, irksome things but powerful none the less. 

He kept his guard silently raised; talons snaking back to grip the hilt of Fenrir, preparing to draw the lethal contraption, just in case.

Assuming he saw no direct threat in the mottled mass of feather and fur before him Kestrel would open his beak to speak. As always his voice came out serene and calm, if accented, and his words were carefully chosen. "You are Evangeline Topclaw no? I was asked to bring you daughter, Sapphire, here."

The hunter waited after that, ready to dive to cover if need be. The bar was but a few feet to his right, and a thick table was placed just before him. He could have it flipped and be in cover there in an instant if need be.
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Re: Five Feathers and a Friend [Private]

Post by Evangeline Topclaw on Sun Nov 24, 2013 1:51 pm

The room was silent for a while as the news set in, and Evangelines eyes adjusted to the lighting. "Yeah, okay. Thanks. Do I owe you anything, mister...?" Evangeline plodded further down the stairs and walked to her daughter, her eyes not leaving the form in the doorway.
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Re: Five Feathers and a Friend [Private]

Post by Kestrel on Tue Nov 26, 2013 4:25 am

Payment? The haunting gryphon seemed to smile a bit softer at that. No, there was no need for that. His payment had already been forwarded to an account and he'd merely been doing as asked of him. He'd have refused that payment as well had he only the ability to do so. Alas this world was not like his home village where money was useless. Here, in this cruel and swirling maelstrom money was the force that drove the storm; A necessary evil.

"Kestrel." the gryphon said giving a bow of his hooded head and bringing his gauntlet clad hand up to rest on his opposing shoulder; as per the traditional greeting of his people. "You owe me nothing." The gryphon went silent after that, his hooded gaze watching the two across the room from him unflinchingly.
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Re: Five Feathers and a Friend [Private]

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