Down to the Root


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Posting Elemental
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Post Sun Oct 13, 2013 9:53 am

Down to the Root

Caustic flexed his neck, a rather discontented scowl on his face. He was doing a friend a favor, and the event was rare enough to irritate. He felt like destroying something for the need to go out of his way like this.

Of course, when Sunspot had approached the spiked black stallion he hadn't been able to turn him down. It was a reasonable enough request; better, it held a possibility of being an interesting experience. And he had a bit of a soft spot for the tiny red stallion. It still surprised him to some extent that one of his social experiments could prove the beginning of a real relationship.

Since Sunny continued to surprise him by exceeding his expectations in rather impressive leaps, Caustic continued to find him amusing. There was, however, a secret that he now carried; his "project" had done more than garnered a temporary fondness by being entertaining. By earning Caustic's respect (through no small amount of struggle), Sunny had opened a crack in the Warrior's armor. It appeared, much to said Warrior's displeasure, that once in that little crack the little red fellow had wedged inside Caustic's affections and become irremovable.

In short, the cruelly apathetic stallion cared for him, enough to call him friend and Circle-mate. He hadn't properly acknowledged this fact, not even when he joined the Circle his peppy friend had founded. To his mind, it had been more a matter of staking claim over Sunny and joining with two Rogues; Sunspot was his to look after and guide, to disillusion and reshape. Nobody else would be allowed to mess with him. Eternal, in turn, had also gained his respect and lodged herself too far inside to be considered normal - but she was Rogue and the only Serian he would willingly follow, so he counted that as a valid exception. If he hadn't bound himself to her as friend and confidant happily, then it had at the last been with cynical amusement. Which, for him, was pretty much his version of happy.

In the end, it all lead back around to this fiercely brave, tiny red stallion wedging in just as deeply. Except that there was nothing at all exceptional about Sunspot. He was small, peppy, loyal, and highly adaptable (especially when shown no alternative). Yet each time Caustic tasked him with a new way of growing beyond the shallow facade that had been erected to hide from reality Sunspot did more than rise to the challenge; he kicked it down the hill on his way passed to the mountain top.

And each time it stuck.

So when the stallion found him in the neutral lands of their realm, Caustic found he didn't honestly need much convincing. Sunspot wasn't being drug along the journey of his growth; he was running ahead any time a direction was given. And Caustic knew it was for more than the sake of growing beyond his personal limits. His little friend went that extra length to try and please him; first out of fear, and over time out of honestly enjoying surpassing his expectations.

It was a reward for doing so well, so often, this willingness to do something in return. And, grudgingly acknowledged, it was out of fondness for his friend. He was, much to his own astonishment, quite willing to do whatever that little red stallion may need to have his life be just that much easier. The fellow may not be a bondmate, but he was a Circlemate and beyond that, Caustic simply cared for him.

In the end it put him here; standing in the Fields as a bitter wind cut at him under an overcast sky. There was a stallion he was supposed to meet, someone he was to take a measure of and give his own special touch to. Unfortunately, he'd been asked not to kill him; between the choking sulfur aura that clung to him, the spikes ringing his eyes and cresting his shoulders, and his deadly basilisk two-tone stare he was armed to the teeth for proper fighting and defense. He wouldn't find it all that difficult to simply break a leg and leave the hothead plenty of time on his rump to cool down.

It was his corrosive personality that had been requested though, not his Warrior skills. So, with a mild grunt as he acknowledge and accepted the fact that the bond he shared with this stallion - indeed, with all in his Circle - had an unexpected result of being beholden as well as protective, he pushed his ears forward and used that touch of magic that all Serians hold to push his presence outwards. It was, save for the magic of bonding and his stare-of-death, his only ability; yet while he focused it seemed that the shadows grew a little thicker and a dank shadow crawled over the land.

The challenge was clear, a sensation woven through the oppressive gloom as the Autumn breeze began to grow teeth and bite. Any that dared find him would not be expecting smiles and nuzzling.

Just let that hothead Black Thorn make his way over. Even the name gave him a dry amusement as he waited for his next "project" to be brought to him. Nevermind the thorns on a rose, they were no bother to him; he'd take this prickly little fool all the way down to the root and leave him unearthed.

Oh yes, this favor could prove to be quite bearable after all. It had been far too long since Caustic had gotten in a good, old fashioned fight. This particular thorn may prove handy for scratching that old itch.
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Post Sun Oct 13, 2013 10:43 am

Re: Down to the Root

Would you hurry up!? Moony shouted as she flew ahead. Black Thorn snarled and walked even slower. The bat did her growly squeak and looked at Sunny. Sunny nodded and gave the brat a kick in the flank. Hey! he shouted with a jump. Than move it he snapped with a glare. This stallion was really getting to be a problem. He bullied his bond-mates, he disrespected his bonded, and he was just plain rude! Well, he'd be abandoned again before he let that idiot tear apart his herd, his family. They all paused and shuddered when they felt a shift in the atmosphere. Uh oh, trouble coming Sunny muttered. Moony grinned and sang songed Someone's gonna ge-et it~ Sunny gave her a dry look while Black Thorn gave her a weak glare. You know what? Fluff this, I'm outa here! Sunny quickly blocked his path, eyes narrowed and ears back. You have two options. You can either turn around and go willingly or we drag you there by your ears. Your choice. Ooohhhhh! In your face! Ouch! she shouted with a huge grin. Black Thorn snarled again, but yielded. He maybe an idiot, but he isn't stupid. They finally got to the meeting place where they saw the intense stallion waiting, and by the looks of it, he was even not happier than usual. Sunny and Moony grinned at each other, before kicking him in together. Hi Caustic! Enjoy! Try not to kill him please. But if he gives you trouble, feel free to give him a kick. They might seem a little mean, but you don't mess with your bond-mates. especially not on that level. He was picking on Paint so bad all he could do was sit there and scowl. Sirensong had to ram into him to get him to shut up. He snarled, again, and shouted Oh, shut up will ya! Moony's eyes narrowed, and Sunny took a big step away from her. This was when she was at her most dangerous. She flew up and slapped him so hard he fell into the dirt. You do not speak to others that way. Especially your bond-mates and bonded. Your lucky to have a new home and a chance to start over, and this is what you do? You're wasting an opportunity a lot don't get you ungrateful welp! Now straighten up before I kick your flank so hard my talons scrape you brain! Breathing hard, she flew over and perched between a startled Sunny's ears. Do with him what you will Caustic. And have fun! With that Sunny turned around and they left Black Thorn to his fate. You sure know how to tear someone apart verbally. She suddenly looked sheepish, and muttered He made me mad. Sunny could only laugh.
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Posting Elemental
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Post Sun Oct 13, 2013 11:36 am

Re: Down to the Root

Caustic raised a brow as the spike-collared Serian gathered himself out of the dirt. One would think that, in light of what could only be called abuse for such disrespect, a stallion would learn to curb his tongue. Instead, all evidence pointed towards the smaller Serian growing even more sullen.

Tilting one ear he regarded the retreating forms of his Circlemate and the bat-bonded. Clearly, they expected this Black Thorn to give him as much trouble as they'd received. What interested him was the current method of dealing with such trouble. The young bonded's anger was hot and fierce, full of fire and challenge; she sought to tear wounds that bled.

He likened such to poking at a cornered wildcat after it'd already bitten your nose.

Now that you've been promptly humiliated, he drawled in a low, cold voice that was rough enough for him to have been gargling acid, Are you going to stand up and prove yourself tough enough to fight? Or are you too chicken to take on someone bigger than you - nothing more than a mockingjay parroting the cougar?

He smirked in derision, clearly hedging on the would-be bully caving under the promise of real bruises. In that moment he exuded nothing more than sheer arrogance.

Looking down his nose at him he added derisively, Prefer to pick fights with foals?

The way Caustic figured it, Black Thorn had actually gotten off easy. His own bonded didn't go hot while she was angered; she went cold. She swallowed him whole before to prove a point - twice. When Songhue got mad she was more inclined to destroy or disown; a week in her digestive tract had been ample proof for him, especially when she didn't heave him back up the second time. There were rules for bonding, ones he'd tried to get around; while he'd been willing to gain the boost in power he hadn't intended to lose the freedom of having nobody to answer to.

No, he was never called an ungrateful whelp. He didn't bond to someone that would mess around; if he proved to be a disturbance among the others she'd bonded and become responsible for then he was gone again. He wasn't willing to give up that extra power once he'd tasted it again - and most importantly, she'd bested him when he'd tried to challenge again, thinking himself prepared after the previous display. And then she'd humbled him, leaving him in a steaming pile. Only his layers of volcanic acid had kept him safe, and even then he'd been more than slightly scorched.

Now, he got to be the one to devour the insolent challenger. If he dared to accept the challenge and fight.

Caustic most sincerely hoped he would.
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Post Sun Oct 13, 2013 11:55 am

Re: Down to the Root

Black Thorn picked himself up and shook himself off. His bonded was so annoying! He once asked why she would keep him around if he was such a bother, and her only response was 'I want this to work.' Whatever! She could do whatever she wanted, he didn't care! He glared at the bigger stallion and snapped I don't fight! I don't want to fight you or anyone else. I was dragged here against my will and I'm sure you have better things to do than stand there and belittle me. Okay, so maybe talking that way to someone like him wasn't the smartest thing to do, but he was mad, he was frustrated, and dang it, that slap hurt! He just wanted to go back to his swamp and wrestle with Annie, his favorite alligator. But instead, he was here with some jerk that wanted to get him riled. He huffed and waited to see what the bigger stallion would do. He really hoped it would be walking away so he wouldn't have to deal with this anymore.
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Posting Elemental
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Post Sun Oct 13, 2013 12:15 pm

Re: Down to the Root

Oh, colt, I have yet to begin belittling you, Caustic smirked. Although I think you must be confused. If you didn't want to fight, you wouldn't antagonize them.

Stepping closer, he drew his head high and looked down at the sulking stallion he'd been charged to figure out. If you're so inclined to trouble, lad, you've found it. Hit me. I dare you. What's so big and bad about the little stallion with the sullen face?

Something better to do? The guy was proving a walking contradiction; loved to snap and fight, backed down from an open invitation. By the Gods, this was fun.

Then again, he was attempting to crowd into Black Thorn's personal space; there was a calculating joy in his gaze, a fierce savagery that bespoke of a willingness for bloodshed. And still, he watched Blackie's nose, careful not to glimpse the other's eyes.
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Post Sun Oct 13, 2013 12:52 pm

Re: Down to the Root

Black Thorn growled and glared. Are you not listening? I don't want to fight! He really didn't want to fight. But he also didn't want to get too close to others in case this bonded turned out to be a flake. He was honestly surprised she hadn't dropped him yet. I'm gonna level with you. I know what I'm doing is dumb. I get it. The bat and the sundrop tell me all the time. It doesn't change anything. Even if I straightened up it wouldn't change anything. She's already threatened to get rid of me! She's gonna flake and I'm gonna be let down again! He thought his last bonded had cared for him. He thought his last bonded would be there for him. But he was dropped and it hurt. It really did. And he never wanted to feel that pain again. He didn't think he could survive it again. He looked at the bigger stallion and was struck with a thought. Why are you here? What could you possibly gain from this? Why would an unfeeling stallion that could beat him into the dirt go to this trouble? It made no sense. Besides, he'd rather talk about that than his insecurities.
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