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  • Beqanna


    Assailant -- Year 226


    "But the dream, the echo, slips from him as quickly as he had found it and as consciousness comes to him (a slap and not the gentle waves of oceanic tides), it dissolves entirely. His muscles relax as the cold claims him again, as the numbness sets in, and when his grey eyes open, there’s nothing but the faint after burn of a dream often trod and never remembered." --Brigade, written by Laura

    i want to feel the edges start to burn
    The mild glow of dawn wakes him, peeking between the leaves of the copse in which he’d slept. It is still a little strange to wake with four hooves on the earth rather than in the comfort of an aerial nest. The bright-eyed Stratosian is adaptable though, and by the time he’s fully awake he’s forgotten the temporary disorientation.

    His gift had been taken, the Moon Goddess had rescinded her gift. He can no longer shift, and the wings with which he takes to the sky are feathered and unremarkable.

    They are strong though, and he climbs high and quickly, reaching the dampness of the clouds before the sun has fully crested the horizon. From his high altitude, Ruhr watches the sun rise, feeling the warmth on his dappled cheeks and the wind in his hair. It is not the same as a sunrise in Stratos, but he has learned to appreciate the differences, much as he has done with the handful of strangers that he has come across in this new world.
    Avoiding other Stratosians means avoiding questions about his missing gift, and Ruhr has seen few of his fellow equines since his arrival in Beqanna. He means today to be no different, and so when he spies a familiar flicker of translucent wing, he begins to descend. He has no desire to cross paths with one of his kind this morning.

    He lands near the edge of the dark Forest, and the long shadows of the trees throw charcoal stripes across his dappled grey coat. He shakes out the matching grey feathers of his wings, and folds them to his slender sides. Like most of his kind, Ruhr is light-boned and svelte. Despite his smaller size, there is a wiry musculature to his build, and an old limp keeps his gait from being entirely graceful as he makes his way to the shallow creek for a drink.

    @LittleSong for whomever strikes your fancy Smile
    The simple sound of trotting hooves was heard; she breathed before stumbling upon a creek but spotted the stallion with her head tilting to them. Noticing the wings, she doesn't go up close immediately and keeps her distance. Giving out a small neigh in return, she was oddly cautious at first glance. Her mane was slightly draped down while still staring at them. 

    "Who is this that holds such wings and stratosian eyes?"

    She keeps her eyes on him, oddly curious and focusing on the stallion across from her on the creek. 

    "Where do those wings come from? How do you get them?"

    She doesn't seem to stop asking, being oddly smaller than them. She notices the limp but doesn't go on to push further in question as if she would pile it up endlessly if she did. She had to keep a limit to how much she would ask.

    @kahzie  Sorry, I didn't even know I got tagged. Would have responded sooner.
    Focused on his drink, Ruhr does not immediately notice the eyes upon him. Only when he has had his fill, and washed the last of the sleep’s bitterness from his mouth does he raise his dappled head to look around again. He meets an unexpected gaze, and at first his expression is one of alarm, thinking that the translucent-winged Stratosian he’d been trying to avoid earlier had somehow found him.

    But the surprise turns very quickly to a bashful chuckle, for it is quite clear that the spotted mare in front of him is most certainly not the yellow stallion he’d been trying to avoid. She is certainly smaller and definitely much chattier than his brother.

    “I’m called Ruhr,” he answers, his sheepish laugh transitioning into an easy smile. “And these are the wings the Moon has given me.”It’s not the whole truth, but sharing that the deity had taken all else she’d given him is not the sort of confession one tells a stranger.

    He senses there are more questions behind the mare’s intensely curious gaze. He decides to ask some of his own, as it feels only a fair trade.

    “Who are you? Are these your woods?”

    @Snowbell oh no worries! i'mma double tag this time just in case! @LittleSong
    Quite astonished by this stallion who refers to himself as 'Ruhr,' she would most definitely go up to him. Taking a closer look, she takes slow walks towards him with her mane in the wait before tilting her head to let her eyes peek again at the stallion. The wings seem to keep attracting her attention. 

    Listening to him, though, she finally withdrew her gaze and tried to focus on knowing the stallion more. He was much bigger than her, yet, she didn't seem terrified from running away with this curiosity. 

    "I feel a little jealous that I don't have wings, but... I guess it wasn't meant to be for me."

    She says before moving to take a little sip from the creek and turning back to him after the little drink.

    "My name is Snowbell. I don't own these woods, though. It's not more a free land place. I tend to roam around without much to do or in mind. I don't know what I do. What does bring a handsome stallion such as yourself around these parts?"

    Standing before him, she could not help but ask why a majestic one like himself would be there.

    She focuses so intently on his wings that he wonders if she might have Baltian in her blood. The  myths of his people tell of the obsession of the sea monsters with the flight of the Stratosians. There is no sign of marine attributes on the spotted mare though; she looks more similar to the land-dwelling natives of this place called Beqanna than to those of Ruhr’s homeland.

    Similar, but much smaller. He realizes this more as she draws nearer, still appearing somewhat cautious as she eyes him from below the veil of her mane.

    “The Moon does everything for a reason,” he replies, the familiar adage of his people falling easily from his tongue. “Perhaps she has other gifts in store for you yet.” He hopes that is true for him, though he does not say so aloud. Perhaps in time she will return what she had taken from him.

    Ruhr follows the slow approach of the little mare as she comes for a drink, taking the opportunity to look her over a bit more thoroughly while she is otherwise distracted. She’s a pretty thing, he decides, if a little small. His people are not as massive as the natives of this place, and Ruhr had once been considered especially tall, at least amongst those of Stratosian society.

    Her name is Snowbell, she tells him, and this woodsy place where they’ve met is a land without concrete society. Not his sort of place then, Ruhr decides. If he settles down, it will need to be somewhere else, which is almost a shame.

    The land is beautiful in the spring’s morning light, long beams of light filtering through brilliantly green leaves of the canopy overhead, few reaching the forest floor below. Yet even with the somewhat diminished light, the sunset dappled stallion can see that though the mare lacks feathers entirely (poor thing), and her eyes are a shade of green rather than a mirror of the sky overhead like his own, she is still pleasing to look at.

    “Avoiding someone,” Ruhr answers, his smile widening at the compliment, and he gestures toward the sky with one feathered wing. The movement shows off the colorful pinions of his wings - shades of pale orange, pink, purple, and dusky blues.

    Though she’s admitted to living the idle life of a vagabond, her wingless sides suggest she might know the terrestrial land better than Ruhr. The curious stallion hopes she might be able to help him out. “Though I’m looking for a place to settle down as well. Somewhere of my own, where uninvited relatives are less likely to fly by for a chat.”

    Ruhr smiles again, amused at the idea of a border stopping his family, then turns his dawn-sky colored eyes to her green ones and asks: “Do you happen to know of any unclaimed clouds? Or meadows, I suppose; I might as well get used to living on the earth.”

    @Snowbell @LittleSong
    She listens again to him, with her observation still the same. Having little to no clue about such history and past, she is as clueless as those who only knew of the land with no magic or beautiful features. 

    He was much bigger than her, but what did she really have to fear? Perhaps only regret would be lingering if she did not indulge in her curiosity. 

    "I don't even know who the Moon is. I've never heard of any history of sorts before. I just woke up and found myself in the land of this forest. I don't even know the creation or the start of life."

    Again, there was a hint of curiosity but sadness as well upon hearing the portion of 'relatives' from him. Perhaps, she was alone for too long; what had she ever done in her entire life?

    She looks at his sunrise marking, fascinated again she was by those marks, unlike her spots that remain as common to herself. His wings sparked a colorful variation that turned her eyes to sparkle with how this stallion was beyond anything beautiful she had ever seen. 

    "Clouds??? You can live on a cloud?"

    She had never heard of such a thing... if anything, she didn't even know anything about living or settling down. She has been roaming for ages. 

    "At most, I know of the green meadow that reaches up to my belly year round. The green there is fresh and edible. I've only ever seen another horse once in my life, and you would be the second one that I've seen. You've seen this forest; have you seen the meadow? You sound like you have a big history in the sky."

    She wonders now, this stallion who holds wings and lives within the clouds. 

    @ Ruhr @kahzie
    ‘I don’t even know who the Moon is.’

    Ruhr cocks his head, his blue eyes narrowing slightly. She doesn’t know of the Moon, the celestial source of all magic, the deity worshipped by the natives of Stratos? It is no wonder she is ungifted, Ruhr realizes. The powers gifted by the deity are lesser here in Beqanna than they had been in the world before, but Ruhr has not lost his faith in the unseen.

    But it soon becomes clear that the Moon Goddess is not the only thing that the spotted mare does not know. She is alone here, she tells Ruhr, without history or ties. The dappled stallion becomes thoughtful as she chatters, telling him of the meadow and asking after his history in the sky and of living on clouds.

    “Yes, Stratos - my homeland - is among the clouds. Our deity, the moon, grants us pieces of her magic.” He stretches out his wing again, indicating that this is such a gift.

    He had intended to find a home, ideally in a kingdom of some sort, and work his way up in the ranks. Ruhr had been someone in the sky, but that time is past. Now he means to become someone here.

    Snowbell is not going to be as helpful on that front as he had hoped, and her knowledge of Beqanna seems as limited as his own.

    “I’ve flown over the Meadow,” he tells her, “but not north of that. Seems that might be where most of this place’s residents live.” He looks that way, though nothing is visible beyond the canopy of trees. “Suppose I should head that way.” He hesitates for a moment, then shrugs to himself and asks: “Would you like to come along? Maybe see some of this place beyond the meadow and forest?”

    She keeps her attention on him, clear that she is useless to him, but she can learn and perhaps even gain something if she learns more about what or who the 'Moon' is. Being a wandering mare across the simple land that she can come across. 

    "Grants a piece of her magic." She could see the clear wings on his back that were the gifts he so spoke of.

    She could tell that from the look on his face; he was clearly looking for something and being so useless, the most she could possibly do was learn along the way while showing him simple ropes of the land she had known about. 

    She was oddly surprised that he would offer to let her come with him, despite being so useless. "I would. Can you tell me more about the 'Moon' and if there is a chance that I can be gifted such a thing? I can only show little things at a time, but I would love to learn! I do not know if there will be a day that I will ever be gifted, but perhaps I can be someone who spreads the knowledge of Moon!" She smiles brightly and happily, going along over to him while wondering. "I have never come across anything magical or anyone who looks like you. I think it is about time that I can pass along anything at this point for other horses and creatures to know!"

    @ Ruhr 
    Ruhr is not an especially devout follower of the Stratosian beliefs, but in the curious eyes of the spotted mare, he sees an opportunity. She doesn’t know his beliefs, and he can take advantage of that. He can make himself seem more than he really is, and he suspects that the mare will believe him.

    “I’ll tell you everything I know,” He says, and resettles his feathered wings along his sides, knowing how attentive she had been to such reminders of his abilities. “And then maybe, if you do everything that I tell you, the Moon will give you a gift as well.”

    As he says it, Ruhr smiles and his left wing extends, the pinfeathers brushing gently against her shoulder, in the same place where wings might grow. There is no harm in flirting, he decides. Maybe if she falls in love, she’ll be more likely to do as he says and follow. It will be much easier to start building power if he has a following, and Ruhr wants to have power again. First though, he needs to find a place to begin building it, and for that he must leave the common lands.

    “There are many celestial deities, but the Moon is the greatest of all. She rules the heavens.” With his extended wing, Ruhr now gestures toward the path that leads out of the forest and toward the Chamber. Speaking as he walks, he explains: “The world is changed now, and the council no longer rules Stratos. There is no one to interpret her will. I intend to find a home, and then to petition her for gifts to build status in one of these new lands. If I am successful, that will be a sign she has chosen me to speak for her.”

    He has grand plans, it seems. It is a shame he never has the ability to follow through with them. This time though, he is more hopeful than before. @Snowbell seems an amenable sort of, and is pleasing to the eye despite her lack of traditional Stratosian signs of beauty. Perhaps he will ask the Moon for feathers for the spotted mare; something to brighten her up.

    “I believe this is the way to the Chamber,” he says when they come to a divergence in the path. “I’ve heard there are cliffs near the sea. Good for flying, and watching the moon. Let’s try there first.”
    Snowbell would be interested, but she would likely remain more one to steer away at some point... possibly. Who knows, though? She would go around to and feel his feathers brush against her shoulder, but she would feel an odd sense of wary a bit but shrugs it off. He simply knew nothing about her, but she would just be fine with that as she could just get to know him more for whoever he is and whoever he follows under. 

    "I suppose I can, but... I can't guarantee that I will follow everything you say. There are things that I wish for, but I will never want to do bad to others overall."

    This mare may be harder to convince, although she can be quite curious and have the wish for similar wings, she still would stay true to herself about right and wrong, if anything. She wanted to keep that sense of hers still. Listening to him in every way in terms of just explaining or giving her information about the rules and celestial deities. 

    She would look at the path, staring off and taking another breath where she was as if ready to run off in that direction since she was a flightless one. Keeping her gaze out towards it, she would start running down that path.

    "Want to see who gets there first?!"

    She smiles, running ahead down the path when she knew that she would likely lose since she had no wings unlike @ Ruhr

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