Down in the Den


A place to store and observe the texts of the Bonded.

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Posting Elemental
Posting Elemental

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Post Sat Jan 11, 2014 1:20 am

Re: Down in the Den

She sat alone upon the hill; she'd found that many of these pockets of insight occurred while she was alone. Songhue wondered at that, to some extent, and yet on another level merely accepted it. Perhaps she could best hear her guide when all was still around her. Perhaps she could best hear herself, in the same moments.

Creatures went missing all the time; that was the way the multiverse worked. Sometimes, they were simply gone. No bodies, no farewells; vanished. In some places, within some cultures, they would be searched for; in others it wouldn't even spark a thought.

She was wondering which she might be, should she vanish. Would anyone seek her? Would there even be notice?

It was a fair question and at least slightly more than vain. In was her way that while she could be fond of other creatures, could even love them, she did not lose sight of who they were. She saw them in their entirety; every difference, every perceived flaw, all aspects that came together to make this being what it was. It was merely how she was; she kept the scales, held the balance. None would get so close as to lose the sharp edge of reality. Even her own cubs; they were not merely her precious younglings. They never could be.

In some way they would always mean no more to her than the young of any other, their appeal based solely on ability and behavior.

It was a fact that did not often trouble her; and yet she realized that, in light of the balance, she may not be able to grow as close to others as she may have. Her own natural reserve could easily hinder having anyone truly, blindly care for her. Would this mean that should she be missing, her absence would merely be accepted? In all honesty, she wasn't sure what she thought of such a possibility.

The valley spread out beneath her as she pondered, the shimmering starlight seeming to ripple in time with her shifting thoughts. It was a beautiful land; her aunt's land, deceptively simple looking. For a time her aunt had faded from her life; her mind twisted at the memory, unable to make any sort of sensible impression of the time. She'd thought of her aunt, of course, for a time. But only for a time; eventually she thought the great weaver of community to be sleeping, a rest so deep and long that she forgot herself and all else. It happened; they would enter a realm and become so enamored with their little games of passing through the land that they forgot their reality.

Some went so deep as to never wake up.

She'd thought such was the case; that her aunt had foregone being a Strangeling. So she released her from her mind. Let her sleep, as long as she had peace. Not all wished to hold to their history. Not all had such strength.

Even still she wasn't entirely sure she'd been mistaken. Although found again, the old ties reforged and strengthened, having thankfully never been severed, retaining a talent was not the same as remembering. But it was more than resting dangerously deep.

Songhue loved her aunt; she knew that. She remembered being young and begging for another story. Remembered when anger and confusion were quickly mollified by a simple touch from this monolithic figure of talent. Once in particular, she'd tried to prove herself capable of taking care of herself during her wanderings; she loved to explore while young and would often wander too far in her study of herbs and energies, following the whispers of the wind. She failed spectacularly of course; the memory brought a wry grin to her lips as she considered it. She was decent for her age, and yet the sudden perspective of just how different she still was from those who had fully grown into their abilities had unsettled her.

It was her aunt that had steadied her. She was a bit spacey even then, always with one ear to the stars as she kept a fiercely protective watch over everyone. She could settle any dispute; or so the young Songhue believed. Nothing was beyond this creature's abilities.

Yet she'd simply accepted this cherished figure's absence. There was nothing quite so much as pining for her, which is what she assumed was meant when one referred to 'missing' someone. She noted the absence and would spare a thought upon occasion, little more. The absence simply was; take the fact and move forward. Build a Clan that would take an active interest in more than drifting and playing dressup. She tired of this ill-fitting meatsack, whichever one she wore for whichever realm currently lent her strength; perhaps there were others yet who wished for more than oblivion.

So she wondered; were she missing, had she slept, would she be missed? Did she matter in earnest, or did she drag along those few left to her in her attempt to have a proper home? Would her absence, the lack of such efforts, be counted a loss?

Or could she also be so easily released, a fact to observe, accept, and move beyond as they went ever onward?

A damp bit of moisture struck her shoulder, though she didn't stir; she knew who had found her, even as the questions stirred deep in her stomach. Few could track her down so easily; Kri'Kahli, the Thunder Horse. The mare seemed reluctant to leave her to such moments of solitude; perhaps fearing what introspective occurrences may develop.

The mare didn't speak; she had no need. She, like the Strangelings, had no use for properly formed words. Sensations, emotions, impressions, half-formed ideas wavered through the air, as easily understood as the touch of the wind.

I wonder as well, they said, the emotions sinking straight into Songhue's being as if she herself experienced them. After so much loss, could the absence of one more soul be noted?

The thought came to her that, perhaps, it was the previous loss that would highlight another's absence. Perhaps it would be that another to vanish would be sorely felt indeed, one of precious few. The concept floated in the air, easily picked up by her companion as the massive mare folded her legs to lay next to the Strangeling she'd chosen to serve.

A sense of companionship settled with Kri's blue-gray bulk; each realized that, if naught else, the other would hold their memory. It wasn't being missed, didn't tell them if they mattered in the end. But at least they would not be forgotten, washed away by the tides of time.

They could have that. They could be held on to by their memory, through one another and perhaps still others.

With barely a flicker of movement Songhue rested one long fingered hand on Kri's shoulder as they sat and watched the starlight ripple across the valley; a silent thanks. The pondering had been turned from morose to intimate through her friend's companionship, something that was becoming a bit of a regular event. Part of her considered interference from her Guide; but no, it was her Guide who helped her to make such discoveries. It was Kri who helped to steady her.

It seemed she always needed someone to steady her, be it aunt or others. She smiled, just slightly; she was okay with that. It was what they were for, to rely on one another. She relied on them for perspective more than anything else, something she found no shame in.

Maybe she didn't matter, maybe there would be no withered souls or shattered hearts should she suddenly cease to be; yet she was loved, for all of that. And she was okay with that, too. She'd need little more.
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Posting Elemental
Posting Elemental

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Post Thu Apr 03, 2014 2:46 am

Re: Down in the Den

I worry sometimes.

Sometimes? the creature snorted, and promptly received a noseful of astral dust.

Do I get annoying? the sprite asked, landing on one of her Guide's ears and fluttering her wings in agitation. So many things tie back to that point for me. It has to get old, has to be repetitive.

Wrong, the creature chided, though her voice was fondly gentle, Those are the moments you notice the most because they reach the deepest. That doesn't mean it's all that happens. Mostly you look forward rather than back.

Do they feel it, d'you think? When I get snagged.

Some may.

Once, all would have, the sprite whispered, letting herself slip down on top of the creature's head. I suppose I'm glad though. How healthy they are, how much they're paying attention; it changes things now. It can help me hide.

Hiding from them?

No. Yes. I don't know. It's just different now. No right, no wrong, no rules - that's what drove her you know, the Mad One. She saw this potential to rebuild things differently. To remake our culture, society, even our history.

She tried changing too much. You aren't trying to change anything; there's no connection.

Maybe I try to hold onto too much. Maybe letting it go would be easier. Better.

Easier than remembering and getting caught here again, the creature agreed, tilting her head back to let the little Strangeling in her hair glimpse the swirling cosmos that had been created, but no better, I think. You've put a lot of your soul into moving forward.

They sat in silence for a moment, each of them watching the stars turn - for that's what they were, each and every one. A little piece of her soul.

Burning. Bright and shining and burning little fractals.

Sometimes you need a bit of the past to keep moving forward.

But this much of it?

You don't overindulge. You just remember.

It feels... It feels like it burdens others.

Because you can't keep it in?

I'm Spirit. I remember, I'm the magic-bringer. It isn't for them.

Of course it's for them, the creature countered, suddenly harsh, they went through the same, in many ways. Don't you even try to deny their claim.

They've forsaken their claim! So many of them, for so long.

That doesn't leave it for you to be the only one. Nor does it mean that when you find the weight heavy you're doing wrong. Stop second guessing.

It reopens wounds, the sprite murmured, wrapping her tiny arms around herself with a shiver, tears out scar tissue.

And until the poison has been bled out you'll need to keep opening that wound, the creature said. She spoke gently again, yet there was no room for argument; it was instruction.

It helps then, she asked, mostly speaking to herself as her voice grew faint, it bleeds the wound for everyone, heals us all - that's why it comes for me so often? I'm healing them?

Just because they may not know when you become entangled doesn't mean you won't know when they do. You know enough to act. So act. Be a Healer, little Shine.

It isn't fair, you know, the sprite grumbled, and she could sense the grin on the creature's face as she added using the others to sway me. Seems that everyone's figured out that trick. Appeal on someone else's behalf, for their sake.

You can be quite easy at times, the creature admitted with a smile in her voice, Now breathe. Remember. And let it go again.

And she did.

And Shine?

Mmm? the sprite asked, flickering half out of existence.

Find the joy in it. Your first step forward. The first time in creating all of this. Taking scraps of nothing and weaving them into sentient magic. The very beginning; the start of all things. Be proud.

And she was.
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Posting Elemental
Posting Elemental

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Post Tue Apr 15, 2014 7:23 pm

Re: Down in the Den

The storms are come.

She stood on a cliff, looking over her lands; the edge of her Den, the beginning of an area that was wholly her own and yet not hers at all. The rain crashed down, storms she'd fueled being built by the Thunder Horses as they crashed into the roiling clouds and carried them on with every thunderous step.

The suns grew muted; creatures sought high ground only to discover that even that would go beneath the deluge. Those who could climbed trees, others played a sort of flotsam hopscotch, bounding from item to item as it was swept along the current; some simply cling to debris. Others were swept away completely.

The Serians had managed to find shelter, for the most part; huddled beneath a tree, braced against rain water that crashed around their chests, or else in a back corner of a cavern. Some didn't want to wait it out; Tribe climbed a wave as it crested, a sight that sent Shine's heart glowing; the mare was truly enjoying herself. Eternal stood upon the top of her waterfall crags, watching as the Thunder Horses heralded the rains and feeding her own Rogue magic as fuel for the storms. Breeze climbed through the torrential rain, cresting the clouds and trumpeting a whinny at the sky-herd before spiraling back down; just his sort of game. He loved the winds that drove them. Caelum followed, then little Nova, and finally even Shiro crested the mist-topped stormclouds; a wave of them, heralding the storm runners onward, wordless calls of greeting and excitement.

Hybrid stood in his basin, head turned to the sky, adding his own lightning to the sparks that flashed off of sky-clad hooves. He wove each to another, creating a web; leaving a trail of sparks and fire. Kri'Kahli shrieked, a wicker that meant so many things and yet said not a single one; she was at her best. It was what she was made for, leading the storms, leaving the lightning fading behind them; a sound of power, purpose, joy, mindless intent.

A stallion, a mare, and two foals followed her. The beginnings of a herd.

Below, a great crack sounded, drawing the eye of any who could see; Sparkle's bird-tree, for so long the start of his home, the heart and key, was flailing wildly amidst the gale. Shine felt a tug on her heart; it had been a source of joy for so long, such an important part of his home. To see it fall would mark a sad day, the passing of the time that had been.

Another crack - a branch, a lower one and quite large, was flung into the air. Not the tree then, merely the weakened pieces. It would be stronger now; without the ill branch it could thrive even better, last even longer. The days were not yet past - it was not yet time.

The rains would pass; the floods would fall. Slowly, life would return to normal, but first there would be the aftermath. Debris to gather and clear, materials she would magic back into the land, allowing each to be absorbed as the realm needed. Areas to maintain; clearing the rivers that led to ponds would be first, else the water grow too backlogged and turn pond into swamp. To change the nature of a place wasn't the point of these storms; it was to strengthen, to cleanse, to grow anew. Altering beyond that would be a bastardization of the ritual.

Path and BlackIce, such strong believers in good hard work, would be the first to begin work. Many would start in their own homes, doing what they could themselves; and then they would join together, working in unison to aid in the efforts of reparation. For that time, in those moments, it would be that the home belonged to none of them for it belonged to all of them; it wouldn't be Thyme's woods or Flint's desert, but a part of the realm that belonged to all of them. Part of the realm they all belonged to.

But first, Shine thought, feeling dizziness swirl through her mind as the waters swirl through her home, I'm going to go have to recover from a hangover.

Magic-drunk; she'd overdone it, fueled too much of the storm, reveled in too much of the raw powers that crashed around her. She'd known there was a reason why she didn't normally do more, go further. She could, Gods knew; she had the power, the knowledge to use it. But the hangovers could be a nightmare. It'd been so long since she'd indulged so deeply that she'd honestly forgotten the price.

No matter. She would take time to gather herself while her bondeds worked in their individual lands; by the time she could see straight, they'd be ready for unified effort. Hopefully; vaguely she wondered just how bad it would be this time.

At least her mate would be able to care for their three cubs in the meantime. It would make things easier. She tried not to hear the sound of their Guides laughing at her.
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Posting Elemental
Posting Elemental

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Post Wed Sep 24, 2014 10:47 am

Re: Down in the Den

Sometimes things came to her; in a vision or a dream, or a lost memory bubbling back up through the ages. Sometimes she wasn't sure where they came from and only remembered later, well after the fact. It'd taken her a while to piece together the bruising she couldn't remember getting with the pixie that had taken roost in a tree and started causing trouble, for instance. Time didn't always connect properly for her; it was why she couldn't help strengthen her lands in that last key aspect.

Today she was sitting in her Den, watching the cubs tumble and play, and letting her mind wander; it was in these moments that things most often came to her. It was in one of those moments where she put the bruising with the pixie, at any rate. Today, what came was a song.

When all the stars up in the sky flicker out and die
When all the trees that grow so strong wither up and dry
when all the whippoorwills have flown and sang their precious lies
even then my dearest love, you'll find me by your side

when all that's known has been forgot, and time will not abide
when all the rivers have run out, and fire fills the sky
when all has turned to darkest ash, and only death resides
even then my dearest love, you'll find me by your side

Never shall you walk alone through strife or pain or fear
For if you should have need of me you'll find that I'm quite near
Just look within your heart to find the truth you need to hear
My strength was in there all along, with all that I hold dear


She didn't know where it came from; she didn't know if she'd sung it to them as wee little ones, before they could tumble around like little storms of laughter and gaiety. She didn't know if it'd been sung to her; there was much she'd tried to forget about her time with her own mother. She didn't know if it'd been something she'd simply seen, an inspirational moment with another mother. She only knew it was for the darkest of nights, a small head resting close to someone who petted and protected.

She thought it was a good song, though she knew she wouldn't retain it; music came to her almost as often as the memories did, but only the memories honestly remained. And even those grew slippery, confusing her as to what was now and what had once been and the visions of what would be in other places or could be in another time.

It didn't bother her though; her mind was loose, accepting, allowing the moment to flow through her and filter out what needed to be retained. Her Guide was there, as well as her Bondeds, but they were shielded from the odd temporal flux in her head. She could feel them; their joys, their sorrows, their hopes. She could feel her Guide as well, and there was no shielding from that - the creature whispered on the vague sensations that flowed through her, bringing her insight and sharpening some of the visions.

And before her the lost Thunder Horses pranced with little cubs that were storms of light and ferocity, and life sang of simplicity as the love of her Bondeds swirled inside her.
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