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No title.
(2013-01-20 - 2013-01-31)
No description.
Faruja Senra Of all of the injuries Faruja has taken in his life, he's come to realize that blunt-object related ones to the skull are the absolute worst. After finally waking up from yesterday's little excursion into the water treatment facility, the rat has been rather slow in doing anything productive, mostly due to the massive headache a fracture in his skull has given him. Thankfully, his companions have ended up as decent medics. A few applications of his own skills along with a good dose of alcohol and painkilling herbs, and the Burmecian can at least move without wanting to keel over in pain.

Managing to make his way into the garden, he takes a seat by the fountain, rubbing the back of his additionally bandaged head. The light outside tells him it's likely around noon, with additional evidence added to this by a grumbling stomach. Sighing, he lays his head back.

"I /swear/ those children are going to get me killed one day."
Hati For Hati, things have not been so simple these last few days. After having been lost in the catacombs beneath Traverse Town, she had barely had a moment's rest before getting confirmation from Avira that her brother was, indeed, missing. It had only been insistance from the VALKYRI leader that kept her from running off immediately to persue the search. Sleep hadn't helped the whirring in her mind, the need for action, the feeling that she had to do /something/ before it's too late.

First Serrak had gone missing, now Skoll. With her brother's influence being one of the only things keeping her from the dark abyss, she /can't/ lose him now. Better to focus on doing something than considering the alternatives. So, that is what has brought Hati back to the Shard Seekers. Skoll spent so much of his time here, this seems the perfect place to start a hunt. Alas, it seemed impossible to pick up his scent after he left, with the Dark Portals being easily opened to anywhere. So time and time again the hunter is brought back to the start of the trail.

It's mid-day by the time that she comes back from yet another fruitless search, tired and frustrated. Sleep has come few and far between, even when people insisted that she rest. The girl is decked out for travel, with a beaten backpack over her shoulder. She's crouched atop the roof of a nearby building when Faruja emerges, the wolf watching him for a moment before she hops down like some beast out of nowhere. "Maybe it's not just them. Maybe you need to spend some time training. Every time I see you, you look worse." Not that Hati looks in particularly good shape right now, herself.
Faruja Senra One eye slowly opens as a familiar wolfess leaps down. A hand goes for a spear that isn't on his back, the ratling smartly having removed armor and weaponry. Too much heat on top of an injury would only make things worse!

Even the insult that Faruja might normally imply is glossed over as he stares at the wolfess. Oddly enough, he feels some spark of concern for her ragged and tired look, despite being on that thin line between Heretic and simple heathen.

She has a point, too. Slowly, he gets to his feet, tail drooping lightly. Offering a polite bow and crossing of the chest, he rubs the uninjured side of his head. "Mayhap, then, I shall call upon your skills Lady Hati. It seems as of late the odd and unusual repeatedly seek to knock me on my arse. Sparring with my fellows and keeping Squires on their toes seems to do little against martial artists with time magic or demonic, kung-fu frogs. One would be amazed what one tests their blade against when following Ser Seatlan of all persons. What next? Giant man-eating worms? Monstrous, sentient tomatoes?"

The rat slowly gives Hati the Healer's Look, frowning. "...And mayhap it would benefit you as well, M'Lady, you seem as though you fare hardly better. I am glad you are alright. No trap-related injuries?"
Hati While it might have certainly sounded like an insult, the words don't seem to have been spoken with any sort of venom. She had seen him with those terrible burns, and then facing fire again shortly there-after in the tunnels. Now he seems to have gotten himself clonked by the head-truama-fairy. Her head tilts, ears perked slightly as she narrows those mismatched eyes, trying to make some sense of the injuries. Without saying a word, she slings her bag down and starts to go through it, a couple of things knocking against one another. It's hard to tell what she might be looking for, but her tail sways slightly.

"I'm fine." Her reply is quick. For all that she might look exhausted, she at least doesn't look injured. She isn't about to tell him how she refused to transform to keep herself warm in the tunnels, or how she nearly got hypothermia as a result... all just to make sure she didn't damage his robes. Girl has strange priorities. Speaking of robes, that's the first thing she pulls out. They've been washed and folded, and generally it looks like the wolfess has taken quite a bit of care with them. "You have my thanks for these." She offers them back out to him, and once they get taken, she's back in the bag.

Lifting a bottle, she sniffs at it, then puts it back. "I mean no disrespect." The girl glances at him with her scarred blue eye. "You just... need to take better care of yourself." Her ears tuck slightly, listening to all the strange sort of creatures, even the ones he's making up on the spot. "It's important to train against all sorts of creatures, and to be prepared for anything." Finally, she removes two small bottles from the bag. One has a clear, yellow-tinted gel of some sort, the other is milky colored. She holds these out, too, without any explination as to what they are.
Faruja Senra Head-tilt. Faruja watches as Hati digs through her bags, and that swaying little tail. The rat can't help but sway his in time. Really, it's nice to have absolutely normal gestures like tail-waggling around without them being attached to someone he wants to shove down a flight of stairs.

"Need you assist...ahh!" Robes are offered, washed and folded. He'd almost mistake them for new if they didn't have little signs of wear that his lifestyle always gives his clothes. They're taken back, the Templar finding himself smiling. "Why...thank /you/ Lady Hati. You were like to freeze to death without them, that would be a dire shame indeed. I at least have enough fur to keep myself from death by chill. Well, on most of me anyway." Really, the rat sounds surprised he's gotten them back at all, nevermind in such nice shape.

"Feel free to borrow a set whenever you need them, I have plenty." Nod. Then she's back in the bag. Faruja peers about the garden. On a small table set out near the entrance back inside, there's a teapot. Seems one of the Shard Seekers was thinking of him! He's quick to pour it, even lukewarm is enough to perk him up somewhat. By the time he makes his way back and has the robes set in a good spot for the moment, he's being offered a pair of potions.

Oh, he's heard that one before. Sigh. He looks slightly shamed. " tend to forget the consequences of my actions at times. Better myself than little Lily, or Leida...and Lord knows Reize gets himself in enough trouble."

Ahem. "However, I suppose I can hardly court Lady Zia if I am made much more of a mess than at present. The attempt shall be made, Lady Hati."

Faruja rubs his chin. "Quite. Mayhap a desert training excursion would be in order, barring any other catastrophies. Fluorgis is /plagued/ with them as of late." Snort. At this rate, he'll have to call in his Inquisition friends.

Pause. Taking the twin potions and peering at them with slight wariness, he glances between them and Hati. A little paranoid voice whispers poison, and overall, trap. It's swiftly beaten down to an inch of its life by zealotry, irritation, and white knightery voices.

Trust the wolf, rat. Trust her! It's an important part of her being saved! "Well. You have my curiousity. What ever are these for?" Pause. He remembers her words back in the underground.

"No, no. Let it be a surprise. Ingestion, or topical?"

Pop! The rat uncorks the milky-colored one rather than the gel.
Hati "They were well appreciated." The wolf's voice is quiet for once, her mind drifting back to those cold tunnels, perhaps. "I've never been fond of the cold, but there seemed little enough space without adding a wolf to it." In some ways, the wolf form of herself is harder to control, and if she had paniced in that dark, enclosed, cold, haunted place, it probably wouldn't have been good for any of them. Beasts usually have only two responses to danger: fight or flight. At least as a human she had control enough to think and react properly.

"It is a shame that ones so young have to be involved, but they are here because they choose to be." In some ways, this wolf girl looks a bit younger than her actual years, but perhaps experience in speaking to her would prove otherwise. "Part of accepting them as your pack is acknowledging their strength." Maybe the Shard Seekers aren't really a 'pack' in the sense that a wolf might see it, but she had already tested Reize as an alpha, so perhaps it isn't too far a stretch.

Hati makes no comment as to his 'courting' of the white gargress, although her ears do move backwards slightly. Jealousy is a negative emotion, so it comes easier to her than more positive ones, like trust, or love. In her world, choosing mates is about strength, yet it's clear that this mouse chooses for some other reason. That confusion is what has her drawn to it, trying to make sense of such things. "I can't tell you for certain the reason this city is facing such hardships, but I warned Reize once... the more he and the Shard Seekers get involved in the affairs of the worlds... the more people will come to challenge." She had warned him that there were worse things than her coming, and her words have proved true.

With the bottles passed over, Hati stretches herself, yawning wide-mouthed. She blinks, at first, then looks back at him. With one claw-tipped finger, she taps at the gold-tinted gel, "You'd asked about something for burns." It doesn't look like the sort of medicine they would sell in the shops, but perhaps some other sort of tribal thing? Certainly, she couldn't be trying to make matters worse, could she?

As he uncorks the mily colored one, it would smell vaguely of vanilla, cream, other pleasant enough scents. "As for this one..." She reaches and tilts the bottle in his hand to pour some onto her fingers, rubbing it on her palms. Again, she offers little in the way of actual words, even as she walks behind him and eases her hands towards the mouse's neck. Her fingers are warm where they touch, the smell relaxing. The pleasant part, besides the massage those muscles in his neck and shoulders that she starts to give, is the way the liquid warms as she works.
Faruja Senra "Wolf? to understand what you mean." Apparently the rat hasn't realized Hati can transform! "You seem quite wolf-like enough to me." She has tail and ears after all!

A brief frown, and slackening of his wavering tail shows just how conflicted he is on Hati's point. "Truly, I do so wish they would find a less hazardous occupation, but they are all quite stubborn in their own ways." One clawed hand clenches his robes. Was he really underestimating their strength?

"Mayhap you are correct. 'Twas not /them/ that ended up with a metal rail slamming into their heads, after all. The downside of being a knight, I suppose. We are trained to sacrifice ourselves for Lord, country, and companion. Adventurers oft, it seems, are not in need of protecting it seems. Ahh, but to know when to protect and when to allow their strength to stand on its own..." Faruja shakes his head, musing trailing off before he gets another headache.

Hmm? The rat catches those ears folding, but the thought of jealousy hardly strikes him. Someone's still not too good with females, it seems! "Mmm, I do believe you speak rightly. I fear they shall drown under the weight of world affairs. Truly, the Heartless seem as nothing against the machinations of mortals. I should hate to see Baron or Alexandria bring their swords against such fine young people." The two nation's names are spat out, though Alexandria moreso.

With Faruja's suspicions of the potion's purpose made true, the rat sniffs the milky white substance. "M'Lady Hati, you are a dame and a scholar. 'Twas in jest, however, Lord knows I need it. It shall be put to good use, that I assure you! Are you some sort of alchemist? These are no store-bought remedies." The rat sounds a touch impressed.

When Hati's fingers touch his neck, Faruja tenses, surprise written on his features. Then, slowly, the relaxing smell and warm, gentle massage of Hati's fingers along his neck have muscles and tension slowly bleeding away from the rat's body. He wobbles slightly, before his tail regains balance. A tiny sigh of relaxation escapes him, and even a little goofy smile. "My, my, I do believe I could get used to this...never would I have thought you this, well...gentle." His tail will start to lightly wrap about Hati's own should she not pull away for balance. He's not used to being this relaxed, nor getting massages. Indeed, he doesn't even broach the question about her brother, though that might be quite obvious given the male wolf hasn't been brought back hog-tied and ready for a collective Shard Seeker welcome home. Or more likely beating, from Faruja for worrying them so.
Hati "You haven't seen the half of how wolf-like I can be." Hati replies, and perhaps there is some measure of darkness in her tones. If the templar hadn't actually seen Skoll's transformations, then her own would certainly come as quite a surprise. Seeing her hunt, or fight... well, a wolf is a far cry from the quick movements of the girl who seems like like a rogue than any sort of front-line fighter. Then again, she could give many armored knights a run for their money. "Perhaps some day I can show you, test just how strong you really are." She rumbles a sound somewhere in the back of her throat.

"In the wild, all members of a pack protect one another. They fight with combined strength to take down enemies that would not be able to be faced alone." of course, her own pack had not been quite so ideal. "At least in a true pack." Her father had isolated those he saw as weak, driven them out of the pack, surrounded himself only by those who were physically strong, without seeing that not all strength lay in muscle and fang. "Your pack is strong enough that if you trust in them... they can stand against whatever comes. I have seen enough of them to know that."

As she begins to ease the muscles in his neck, the wolf's voice grows quieter. "My mother knew a bit about natural remedies. I remember a little." More than most, perhaps. This isn't the sort of tonic that they would usually sell, perhaps for obvious reasons. She watches his reactions, letting herself follow them as a guide. "Hrmph." The wolf makes a soft sound, "What would you expect, then? My fangs at your throat?" She muses, and as if to tease at the thought, the girl leans in and makes to bite at him, even if the mouse would likely only feel the most fleeting pressure of her fangs before she backs away again.

There is only so much she can do with the potion without asking him to remove his shirt, so she finishes with his neck and shoulders, then eases back. "As you can see, it helps to ease the stress of battle-worn muscles. I'd give you a better demonstration... but I doubt this is the place for it."
Faruja Senra "Will you now? Hardly could I turn down the invitation to a duel, M'Lady Hati, against a talented individual. Though mayhap after my skull is slightly less dotted with cracks." Injuries do tend to get in the way of true strength testing! His mind wanders as he relaxes, trying to picture her as more of a wolf. All he comes up with is a decidedly chibi-wolf Hati with a bone in her teeth, gnawing away as she wags her tail then begging Priel for bacon scraps. Snicker. Snicker snicker. Somehow, he's likely way off base. That sounds more like Skoll.

"Cooperation and coordination, hmm?" Would the Shard Seekers ever become such a disciplined fighting force as Hati's pack-ideal espouses? Maybe not in discipline, but the rat can certainly see how they're all slowly coming together. Never have they abandoned each other on the field of battle, either! A promising start, and indeed the group has found individuals with a wide variety of skills.

"Yes. They are stronger than I give them credit for. Children, most, perhaps. Yet closer to adulthood than one might think. I should treat them as such. Ser Seatlan is certainly learning how to lead, in his own nuanced way."

Hati's potion's effects are certainly aided by the soft gentle voice of Hati as she mentions her Mother. His eye droops slightly, as he puts two and two together, followed by his tail. There's a brief sympathetic flick of his ears. "'Twould have been an honor to meet her." He offers, forgoing the usual pious sympathies. They'd likely just anger the wolfess.

Faruja doesn't see the teeth coming, eye almost closed, when suddenly teef! A light squeak, followed by some wiggling in her grasp is accentuated by a brief flush! " be gentle with thy teeth, M'Lady! My neck is sensitive, you know?" He protests half-heartedly.

Then she's backing away. Wobble. He has to un-jello his legs to stand. Ear-perk. Cough. "Nay. 'Twould be unseemly, particularly if little Lily came through. Imagine having to explain." A shake of the head. For all of his focusing on scandal, the rat sounds a touch excited.

"Come, my quarters should suffice, there is enough room I do believe. Really, at this rate, I should have your own bed made. You certainly find yourself here more oft than not." Frown. He uses the break in gathering up robes and potion to finally ask what he's really been wanting to know.

"...Any sign of Ser Ulfang?" The templar gives that look of a person already half convinced he knows the answer to his own question, but it simply has to be asked.
Hati While Hati might only be a bit over five-feet tall, her wolf form is quite a bit more imposing than that. This is no chibi wolf, but if if he hasn't seen just how beastly one of her kind can become... well, it would be an interesting surprise to spring on him some other time. "I'll just have to wait until your wounds are healed then. So you'll have to do me the favor and try to keep out of trouble." Hati chuckles, as if she doesn't expect that to actually happen. Asking the mouse to stay out of trouble is like asking Steiner not to 'clank'.

"Sometimes the greatest strength comes from those you least expect." She notes, casting her eyes towards the building. Her hands still smell like the potion, but she puts them into the pockets of her jacket none the less. "I think they'll surprise you, if given the chance. Although Reize needs to learn to keep that trinket of his away from me. It's bad enough to be plagued in my dreams. I don't want to be taunted when I'm awake, too." She lets out the smallest of growls. Truly, she's isn't angry with him. Not exactly.

The invitation to follow him inside is met with a tilt of her head and a raised eyebrow, but she doesn't seem to take it as meaning more than what it is. "This is Skoll's pack, not mine." She explains, shaking her head. "I have a few places to lay my head when I need to." She hadn't been back to the ruins in a while. The more she remembers of her true self, the less it seems like 'home'. She doesn't explain about her mother, but perhaps Skoll had explained how their world had been lost. Either way, she follows quietly.

"No." The wolf replies. "I keep coming back here, because this is where his scent is strongest." She looks towards Faruja then, exhaustion and frustration in her features. "I keep ending up at dead-ends. He must have portaled out of Fluorgis, and after that... I have no idea where he went. Avira said something about 'The Gaudium Lords', but I have no idea who they are, or what world is their safe haven. Otherwise, I would be knocking on their doorstep." Probably not the smartest of ideas, but... right now, she doesn't really have any others.
Faruja Senra Faruja chuckles a touch at the 'stay out of trouble'. Oh yes, that isn't likely! Still, he keeps the offer in mind, ever willing to test his skills!

The Burmecian shivers a touch, remembering little Lily. Who knew so much power could be contained in a single little girl? Hati's more right than she knows. "Hardly a day passes that one of them does not teach me something or show me that which I thought impossible. A curious group, to be sure. 'Tis a blessing to be amongst them."

Ahh, that little amulet of Reize's. Faruja raises a fuzzy brow. "Mmm, disturbing, really. Some dreams should remain private." Thank Faram his own had never come into the equasion.

"But do not worry overmuch. I hardly believe Reize one to bandy about the dreams of others. He is a well meaning boy."

A shrug. "As you desire. You are welcome here, however, should the need arise." If not a pack member, then a friend of the pack. Or a stray, at any rate.

Leading her down the boy's hallway, he stops at his door. The front has an Ajoran cross hung, marking it as his for anyone even remotely familiar with the Shard Seekers.

"Gaudium Lords, hmm? I wish that I could offer you advice, however, never has such a group came to my attention. Assuming he is being held by this group, they all that can be done is search for more information. I pray Lady Avira can shed light upon his dissappearance."

Like a proper knight, he holds his door open for the Lady, following in and shutting the door after she's entered. The room itself is small and spartan, with little more than a writing desk, a chest for a few odds and ends, a small bed and closet for clothing and armor. On the desk, a tiny shrine to Faram sits, as well as a half empty bottle of booze that's been sitting there for some days judging by the ring on the desk.

Faruja removes his robes, thankfully wearing a pair of pants beneath. After a long stretch, he lays down upon the bed, on his stomach and tries to relax a bit. "I am at your wonderful fingertips, Lady Hati." Really, she's good at this massage thing. He seems to have less bandages than last time, too, many of his wounds having healed well. This time, his only wound was to his noggin!
Hati "They are an unusual pack." Hati nods to herself, a few strands of that dark, multi-colored hair hanging into her eyes as she walks. Usually, the girl's bangs cover over the scarred side of her face, leaving only the green eye and hints of it's blue partner visible. "Our father was an alpha, but he never understood that strength can come even from those you least expect. He hated weakness." She chuckles darkly, a sound that has nothing to do with amusement. "He hated me."

As that leads on to the idea of dreams, the wolf-girl just shakes her head. "From what I can tell, I was the only one to see it. Still, not a good thing to do to someone mid-battle. People will fight for their dreams. Some pople will kill for them." It's hard to tell if Hati is talking about herself, her brother, or others out there. "He claimed that he'd try to help me." She lets out a breath. "Nae sure how anyone can help me track down a myth."

It isn't as if she had come here looking for Faruja to have answers. These Gaudium Lords had kept themselves in the shadows, and if they didn't want to be found, then they wouldn't be. Like the Shadow Lords, there is some power there that is risky for her to stand up against. "Skoll is my brother. I don't like waiting, not knowing." It makes the darkness in her stronger, makes it want to lash out at anyone who might have information, force it from them. Would that really be what Skoll wants, though? If she becomes a monster, even to save him... would it be worth it?

At first, the girl's eyes sweep the room, taking in the sparce place. It's nothing like her own quarters back in the ruins. Then again, she'd lived there for years. It had hundreds of drawings, paintings, blankets, books, all the trappings of home. Without so much as asking for a by-your-leave, Hati walks up to the little shrine of Faram and sniffs at it, head tilting quizzically. "Why does your god smell like stale alcohol?" She wrinkles her nose. The wolf has nothing against drinking, but stale, warm, left-out-for-days booze does not smell good.

She turns back at the rustle of robes, looking at him for a long moment. It's not the first time she's seen him shirtless, but she looks none the less. It's hard to tell what the wolf is thinking, but she plucks up the bottle again, with some consideration. "I would have thought your church would have better use for a knight, rather than watching over these off-worlders." It isn't so much a judgement as a question as she walks over.

Where some people might be shy about physical contact, wolves are creatures of it. They communicate a lot with touch alone. So, she has no qualms at all about removing her own jacket, setting it down over his chair and then applying more of the potion to her hands. The poor mouse, if he doesn't object, is going to end up having his hips straddled so she can rest over him, laying her hands to his lower back and starting there to work her way up.
Faruja Senra The mention of Hati's father, and more importantly, his hatred of her as well as his fool-hardiness has the rat scowling. "Mayhap I flap my muzzle overmuch, but I do believe such a person is ill fitting of the title 'Father'. A true parent guides, cares for, supports one's offspring whether they are 'strong' or 'weak'. And /you/, from what I saw naught but a few nights ago, are not weak." Could this be what set the young wolf girl on the path to darkness? To so much hate and fury?

Sigh. Oh, Reize. Faruja's tail droops in exhasperation. "In the middle of...Lord in heaven, what /ever/ am I going to do with that boy? He needs more than a touch of sense and tact. Indeed, he is lucky to retain his head." Faruja himself isn't sure what he'd do if suddenly confronted with his own dreams laid plainly before him.

One ear perks, however. "A myth? Chasing something that may yet not exist, Lady Hati?"

Not knowing. Closing his eye, all he can see is his sister, lost months ago. Once again, as on so many cold nights, he feels the ache gnawing on his heart and soul. He should be out there searching, He made a promise, an oath. He wouldn't go back on it.

"Hope springs eternal, Hati." Is all he has to say. Somewhere, deep down, Faruja knows that Skoll isn't the type to just go off and die.

Though the rat does wrinkle his nose at his belongings being so wantonly touched, he manages to not look /too/ ruffled in the fur about it. "Less the Lord, and more my own ill housekeeping. I tend towards being a rather...private person, and my companions respect that. Do forgive me, I had not been expecting guests."

The rat's back is as scarred as the front beneath the fur, close trimmed as it is for the heat of the desert. He's at least kept up with his more normal training judging from the gymnast's body the Burmecian keeps, toned and slender as his race's military males tend to be; grace and power in a compact form. A smirk appears on his muzzle.

"Truly, M'Lady, do you believe that the Church would invest one of it's Templar in an organization in which it sees little value? Nay. The promise of the Shard Seekers' goals align perfectly with the Church's. Unfortunately, local politics yet stymie us. Think of it more as assisting them in realizing their potential...even as they help me weather the difficulties of these trying times. They have served me well, and I pray, I them." At first, the Shard Seekers had been little more than tools to the rat for gaining more power for the Church. That they've become friends, and even to some extend family, says much about them.

The little squeak, and sudden flush to the rat's features clearly shows he wasn't expecting to be straddled. Some part of him is rather glad he decided to go with a back massage. As she starts to massage his lower back, muscles slowly unclench, and all the worry and general touch-aversity his society has drilled into him melts away. The flush remains, however, even as his ramrod straight tail finally relaxes. At home, this would be scandalous.

"Lord in heaven, you've the touch of an angel, Hati." He mumbles into the pillow he's laying his head on. Seems massages coax the compliments out of the rat quite easily.
Hati "Speak all you wish. He deserves every ill word and more." The wolf girl replies with a barely hidden snarl behind her voice. It wouldn't be too hard to make that connection - that much of the darkness that this girl bears comes from that one source. "If our world hadn't been destroyed, I would have relished going back to show him just how strong I had become." There is a threat behind her words that has nothing to do with a friendly 'spar'. No, Hati most certainly would have wanted the most bestial form of revenge. She manages to take a breath and restrain herself, though. Letting the anger get out of control just now would be a bad idea.

She seems reluctant to speak more on the matter of her dreams, at least at first. Then again, there were others who knew about the legends. With a sigh, she seems to focus on the muscles beneath her fingers for a time, then speaks. "The old tales of our kind say that there were once two wolves, set by the great spirits to chase the Golden and White wolves... the sun and the moon. My brother and I were named for those wolves, but our mother insisted that it was not a myth... she insisted that these were true people. Those we are destined to find."

It sounds like a romantic sort of ideal. Her fingers are careful over the scars on his back, "When I didn't have anything else, not even my brother... the myth kept me going." And it probably still does in a ways. Doesn't everyone hope that there is someone out there for them? Even those with the darkest of hearts?

She lets her eyes look towards the small shrine, "I meant no disrespect." The wolf often speaks her mind, even when it doesn't make the most sense to do so. He had invited her here, but she had been the one to make the comment none the less. "I do not know your god. I was wondering if perhaps it is like the Greek Dionysus." Who happens to be a god of drink, but clearly that isn't the case. She doesn't fully understand the reasons the Church might lend one of their own to the cause of the Shard Seekers, but ... trying to gain power is not a foreign ideal. The Shard Seekers is a group that many would like to control, surely.

"You have faced many battles." She notes, working upward, her hands careful. Where she might have acquired this skill is anyone's guess, but she does seem to be fairly good at it. "But I think you need to learn to relax some. What is it that you enjoy, sir knight... besides serving your church?" The comment her touch draws her ears back slightly, that strange feeling in her stomach that comes from such words. She keeps it to herself for now, though.
Faruja Senra One might expect a person of God to not endorse revenge. But the combination of increasing evidence to the cause of Hati's reliance on darkness, as well as the hatred he piled upon the poor woman has the rat with the beginnings of a snarl himself. He tamps it down, however.

"Certainly such a person would not be saved from a world's fall. 'Twould be an injustice most dire." No condemnation of her hate. The rat would be quite the hypocrit if he were to pick on that.

Faruja puts the part of his brain that isn't falling into a relaxed, warm lull almost better than any drink in to pondering the nature of her legend. Muscles, thanks to skilled hands and warming liquid, slowly are relaxed and go slack. From the knots in his muscles, the Burmecian has been under a mountain of stress as of late.

"Mmm. There are those within the Church that say each person is born with half of a heart. That somewhere, should they live good lives, they may yet be rewarded with the person that holds the other half, to ease the pain and suffering of being alone." His tail flicks dismissively.

"I highly doubt you are one for religion, but the idea of destined lovers is a common thread amongst many lands...and worlds, it seems. Hardly can I say whether your legends are just that, or prophecy. But given so many worlds, both in Light and Darkness, who can truly say that your golden and white wolves do not exist?" With so many lands connected, can /any/ myth be discounted? Somewhere in the Burmecian's heart, he truly wishes the wolf girl success in finding her other half. With all of that pent up rage, yet kindness lingering beneath, it would grieve the rat for anything less to happen. His muzzle moves in a quiet prayer, only interrupted by the occasional 'ahh' of an overly-tight muscle being relaxed.

"Mmm, I none too familiar with heathen so-called deities. 'Twould be improper to go delving too far, as a Templar. Think nothing of it. Mayhap a few months ago I would be angered, yet, slowly I am learning the difference between questions meant to harm and those meant to enlighten." The rat seems to believe every word. Seems the Church has brainwashed this Burmecian quite well! Thankfully, the Shard Seekers have helped him become somewhat more accepting of others.

What he enjoys? The rat looks back briefly, before she rubs a particularly nice spot along his mid-back, and he practically flops back down. His single eye closes, the rat even undoing his ponytail to let his hair down. Well trimmed, it's still quite a lot when not bound. One larger scar across his back, looking like a series of claws and bite marks, has him wincing for just a second as they're touched.

"Ahh, quite a few things. Dance being one, something of a cultural love you see amongst all nezumi. Poetry, writing, theater...really, just about everything my 'rank' did now allow growing up. Raising and tending to wyverns, though I am hardly the best. 'Twas my sister that gained /that/ talent. She the calmer, level headed, patient one." A small smile breaks on his muzzle at the thought of his sister.
Faruja Senra The rat finds himself smirking a touch. "Yet, all too little time to indulge in them. Though I do believe I shall be counting seeing a skilled masseuse as amongst the number of my recreational pursuits."
Hati "Think of all those you have faced, Faruja. Remember all of those who have had their own worlds fall to the Heartless, some at their own hands, and yet they still live. They still spread the darkness throughout the worlds. Sometimes, even for all those lost... there is no justice." Memories are a terrible thing, especially ones that are so deep-rooted in the anger that drives her. Her mother trying to protect her. Father's cruel words and crueler claws. It sends a shiver through her that he would likely be able to feel with the close contact of her hands on his back.

"I know a little of religion, but not much. My kind worshiped nature, the sun, the moon, the earth and river. At least my pack did, anyways." There were likely other werewolves out there who saw things differently, but her world-view is dedicated to a few short years before Serrak had taken her from that place. "Who is to say that there is not some greater force that guides those things?" The girl is quieter as she says this, shaking her head slightly. "I don't know." Her world is gone, but what is to say that some diety didn't rule over it at some point? Perhaps there are hundreds, thousands of gods... With the myriad of worlds, it seems like anything is possible.

Her hands slowly ease off of his shoulders as she sits back, then climbs off of the bed. "I would not count myself 'skilled', but I am glad you approve." She muses, reaching for a canteen slung with her backpack, splashing a bit of water into her hands to clean them. "My mother had the true skill in it. It's why my father fought another pack leader and took his wolves in order to aquire her." The whole concept seems a bit foreign - even among wolf packs. Her father had never really been a 'traditionalist', though. "Rare skills were always valued."

She rumbles something like a chuckle at his claim to add a visit to the masseuse to his list of things that relax him. "Among my kind... we told stories, sang old legends and ballads." Everything she's said about her kind chalks them up as a tribal sort of people - with a strong oral tradition. "And there's always the hunt. There is nothing like the dirt beneath your feet and the wind at your back as you race your prey."
Faruja Senra Quietly, the rat ponders Hati's words, glancing at her from the corner of his vision as she shivers. So much hate, so much rage. Though he'd never admit it, the rat sees something of himself in the Darkness-using wolfess. Perhaps Dark and Light are at times much the same!

"I am no Priest. Make what you will of my theories, however...I believe the Lord lays certain tasks at our feet. To strengthen us, to harden us against corruption and those whom would lead us astray, we are each given difficulties in our lives that we must overcome. And while I hardly believe it is His Will to visit suffering upon innocent individuals, the subversive elements amongst mortals and fell beings may yet be turned to appropriate tasks by the Almighty. 'Lemons into lemonade', as the humans say. Mayhap it is not that justice does not exist. Rather, we may be appointed the task of seeing justice done, as we are able."

A dangerous theory, and one that could justify many things. But one that certainly would explain the existance of a militant order within a Church, and perhaps the rat's willingness to spill blood in the name of a 'benevolent' deity.

Laying on his stomach, the rat can't quite give a disapproving stare on worshipping things that aren't his religion, but it may not be necessary to even look. He's somewhat predictable on that, after all. The rat's gathered enough to not bother rebuking the wolfess, it wouldn't work in his estimation. Her next statement has him relaxing again, though, his tail's tip swaying as it hangs off the end of the bed. Content Templar!

Faruja is far less ambiguous on the topic. "The Lord touches all things." He comments, nodding to himself.

As Hati gets off of him, the rat doesn't seem like he's about to move too much. Indeed, his eye has gone half-lidded at this point, on the edge of sleep. A light squeak, and he tries to wake up a touch. "You are far too modest."

Roll. The rat curls up beneath a blanket, yawning. Oh, so comfy. A light shake of the head. "I can understand wars over territory, or resources, but individuals? A wretch, a fool, and a warmonger as well I see. Alliances are oft more productive than conquering armies. Less rebellion, less challenges to one's rule."

His head tilts slightly, thoughtfully. "Mmm, I see." Uncivilized society! Not that he'll say that to Hati's face.

"Mayhap you should consider scribing them, or having them scribed. Oral traditions are easily lost to the ravages of time and circumstance. Regail me with one some time, hmm?"

Ahh, hunting. The rat laughs at that. "Why does that not surprise me? I know not what its status shall be, given the world's troubles, but should the good Regent of Lindblum still hold it, you should participate in the Festival of the Hunt. A competition where one releases wild animals into the city streets, and participants hunt them down. The one whom slays the most beasts, or the most challenging beasts, are rewarded and receive recognition from the Regent himself."

He shrugs. "Not to my taste, I do so hate such public grandstanding. 'Tis more of a Royal Dragon Knight's forte, to hog such glory." Blasted Dragoons!

"Something of a tradition amongst my own people to hunt down dragons. Many fail, and die, but it is considered a test of character and strength to even wound such a beast. I had intended to test my own skills in such an act. Unfortunately, the opportunity did not present itself." Alexandria got in the way of that!
Hati The female wolf seems to consider his words for a time. The idea of becoming an arbitor of justice is not a new one. They exist in many different forms, some upholding laws, others religion. Police officer, Templar, Knight, Guard, so many titles but essentially their purpose is the same in that. Alas, that sort of justice is not always black and white. "And what about me?" She asks in a quiet voice, looking towards him over her shoulder. "So many would call for my blood for nothing more than the darkness I carry with me." It is, perhaps, a reminder of how he had reacted that first day. "Or am I simply one to be 'turned'?"

The wolf turns her head back towards him, not seeming to meddle too much in the concept of religion itself. Like most of her past, everything is gray and muddled and unclear, so she has no qualms about simply listening, learning, figuring out the truth she feels for herself. "Within a pack, the alpha is like a king. My father would not be the first, nor the last, to go to war over somethingg like that. Weaker alphas were to be destroyed, stronger ones... were to be dealt with." She smirks slightly. "He had plans to marry the daughter of another alpha to my brother. It would have doubled the scope of his pack. Of course, Skoll wanted nothing of it."

Seeming to carry some amusement with her from this, Hati shrugs at the suggestion of the festival. "There is little challenge in running down scared animals, herded into cages, and then made to run through city streets." She shakes her head, "The true challenge is to stalk your prey. Track them in their own environment. Watch them. Learn from them. Then learn how to strike." She growls to herself, but it is more at the concept than at Faruja. "I don't care for blood sport." Which seems a bit strange from the wolf who tends to take all commers who will challenge her to a fight. Then again, the only people who get hurt are her, and whomever is fool enough to challenge her.

With a chuckle, though, "Hunting a dragon... now that would be a challenge." She muses, showing a hint of fanged teeth at the prospect.
Faruja Senra Faruja looks Hati over. For once, the rat actually regrets jumping the gun on someone. There's so much there under the surface if one but looks! After so much tragedy, the rat certainly feels for the wolfess.

"Darkness is a destructive force, and oft turns in upon the user. You...I think, are a woman worth 'turning' as you say. Even if not to the Light, then to have your particular...talents placed to use that may benefit others. To be frank, in these times, allies are an asset greater than any technology or magic. I would much rather see you as one, than to be forced to draw a blade against you one day."

The thought of Serrak more or less being royalty has the rat hating him even more. Some part of him wants the wolf to show up, if only so he can assist Hati in strangling the wretch.

"...Somehow, this does not surprise me. Ser Ulfang has struck me as...ahh, how to say it...a free spirit? Or a wanderer at any rate."

Smirk! "Not unlike tracking down people. However, no doubt the signs of a monster's passage are far different." Slowly, he smiles.

"Mmm. And does a tiny wolfess think herself capable of it, hmmm? A /dragon/?" He teases, tail flicking playfully over at Hati's ankle. A rather transparent attempt at goading her into a hunting trip, but she's certainly been amusing thus far.
Hati "Oh trust me. I understand that all too well." Her ears tuck down, "I might have let it take me after the first time we encountered one another. I was so... angry." Her mouth moves to frame the word with those sharp, white teeth and a slight tensing of her body that the memory brings back. It is a hard thing to be blamed for something that you didn't do, and worse for people to threaten your life for those things. She lets out a breath, the tension with it. Control is easier here, with the scent on her hands and the close spaces to keep the wolf bound tight. "If Skoll hadn't found me that day, I probably wouldn't be speaking to you like this just now." She laughs, but there is no humor to it. The girl is not fool enough to make light of how close to the end she'd come.

"For now, I just don't know what to do." Hati admits, and it's a hard thing. She has been confused now, for months. Everything had been clear, and now... "I want... to understand these things I feel. I want to know... what it is to feel the things you do." Those intense eyes look towards him again, almost mirrors of the way they had that other day, just before she'd kissed him. "Trust... friendship... love." She growls to herself, then shakes her head. "I don't... remember." It's frustrating, like knowing the ghost of a thing, but never being able to touch it.

She draws closer then, just as she had before, "I would ask you to teach me..." The wolf leans towards him, feeling that tail close to her ankle. Her breath is warm near one ear. There is that tantilizing moment that comes just before something wonderful, but then she stops, and the girl just flops next to the bed, leaning her back against it, her head not too far from his side. "But I fear mine are not the lips you long for." What is it then? Beauty? Hati had her own sort, but it was like something wild and untamed. Maybe her scars then... but the rat bore his own. Trying to think through matters doesn't seem to help.

Luckily, there is that challenge of the dragon, and the wolf latches on to that instead. "Tiny?" She turns to glare at him. "And just who is calling /who/ tiny?" Normally, that would be fighting words, but for some reason, she doesn't feel like biting him for the teasing taunt. "Unless you're trying to claim your abnormally large ears count, I think I have you beat." By a centimeter or two, maybe. She huffs then, "I've taken down worse than you, so I have no fear of holding my own against a dragon. I'm betting you're just afraid it'll be a fire-breather and then you'll end up a rat-kabob."
Faruja Senra Shame courses through the rat. He'd very nearly brought the girl past the brink. "Thank the Lord for such a loving soul as Ser Ulfang's. Your brother is...ha. I doubt I could ever possess such understanding and love. At times I fear my own fears and hatreds drive me more than my dreams and oaths."

An eye meets eyes. Faruja feels that beautiful, wonderful moment almost upon them. Some part of him wants it desperately, a feeling not quite like any he's ever known sparking in his chest. It isn't the burning, powerful love he feels for Zia. His feelings for her burn so very bright, enough so that it blinds the rat to how simply impossible it would be. Warmth. The presence of this dark wolf leaves his soul warm.

Flop. Faruja lets out a breath he'd not realized he'd been holding. Tail drooping, followed by the rest of him, he looks down to Hati's head. Tentatively, he reaches out, to give her ears a gentle scritch.

"Hati, beneath all of that anger and hatred, I truly believe there is a good person. You are so very honest." He smiles lightly.

"And beautiful, I might add, in your own wild way. Forgive me, dear wolfess. I have been a warrior and knight for most of my life. Things of the I know so little of it. Indeed, I stumble about, blinded by the radiance of a love I can barely explain. And...I know not if a Burmecian's heart can be split in twain without the death of its owner. If I can give you nothing else, I shall give you my honesty. I long for Zia, yes." He pauses, turning inward, a hand going to his heart. It beats so quickly.

"Yet, you too stoke a fire within my heart. I shan't say it is love. 'Tis not base desire, nor...anything else I have felt. I am so sorry that this ignorant Templar knows not his own being enough to tell you how he truly feels...but that is the right of it. My heart is a tangled, knotted mess. All I know, Hati, is that I wish you to grow, prosper, and to be /happy/ alongside your brother."

His hand falls away from her head, propping himself up. He smiles. That hand that was scritching is offered, palm up. "However, as for trust and friendship? /That/, even this ignorant wretch knows well. Take it. Take all of the trust and friendship that a single heart may yet be able to give. 'Tis one of the Lord's greatest blessings, to risk body, mind, and soul in the heart of another person. I place all three within your hands, that you may learn these things that no person should ever be without."
Faruja Senra Wince! Faruja shivers, briefly holding his bandaged face. Guilty as charged, to some degree! "H...hardly! I merely wish to observe you in the hunt. Besides, 'tis traditional to take a partner along. If to do naught else than drag off one's smoking corpse." Cough.
Hati It's strange how sometimes Hati seems to be the one giving advice to her brother, and other times things go quite the other way. There may be that sort of rivalry between them at times, but beneath it, the two do care about each other. "Skoll doesn't know about love any better than I do. Not really. Father was always proud of his strong son, and ashamed of his runt daughter, but love wasn't something he taught either of us." She sighs, knowing how puzzled her brother had been in matters of the heart, although he had a different reason for it. The Gaudium Lords had chained his heart from feeling, where-as Hati's had been darkened by anger.

The touch to her ears comes unexpected, and at first they twitch away before she realizes what it might be meant for. Then, after that moment, she closes her eyes and leans into it, a wordless show of appreciation. She wants to tell him that he's wrong about her. She isn't a good person, just a flawed and broken one trying to figure out what a good person might do when faced with choices beyond their control. Instead, it's his words that catch her, and worse, they cut into her like no knives she's ever felt.

Nothing that the mouse says is meant to hurt her, and most of the words are kind, but at the same time, she can't help the fact that it makes her feel something like cold seeping into her heart. "I understand." Everything her father had taught her screams in her ears: fight, challenge, claim, control... but Skoll is right. For all of the anger she carries with her, this wolf will not become like her father. He might just catch the faintest sound of a whimper in the back of her throat, but it is cut off before she has a chance to focus on it. "Let's just not talk about it." She growls then, all vulnerability shielded over in the blink of an eye. What to do? Nothing she can do. Being helpless is not something the wolf likes.

She doesn't say anything about his offer of trust or friendship. Time heals all, and she'll come to deal with her own confusion, eventually. Right now, well... she'd taken a risk once, because she wanted to know what it felt like. So far, all it has earned her is confused feelings and hurt. So much for this mythical love people talk so highly about. Luckily, there are other things to talk about than that, although her body language speaks volumes as to her unease. "Perhaps something that won't set you on fire then, first." She suggests. "We could find a suitable mark from the boards. I'm sure your order could find uses for a bit of extra coin."
Faruja Senra "He seems to love his sister, and his friends. I know not from whom, but I would say Ser Ulfang has learned well. And in time, so shall you Hati."

Faruja is only so blind to matters of the heart. That little whimper, her short answer. He looks her in the eye, sighing. He knows a hurt person when he sees one, and it twists a cold knife in his gut to be the cause of it. But nor could he simply string her along when he himself doesn't know the cause of his own feelings. Ignoring the desire to wrap her in his arms, to somehow heal the wounds upon her, his claws clench the bed. Cloth shreds in frustration.

A Holy Dragoon is healer and warrior. All it seems he can do with hearts is make them bleed.

"Quite. Even we have operational budgets." Wince. The rat is forcefully reminded of the Shard Seeker's operational budget. Not the official ones for the group, but for his own efforts here. Already shoestring at best, only the recent troubles with Heartless have kept it all from coming from his own pockets.

A smile is forced to his muzzle. From the way things are looking, they could both use a little violence to get their minds off of their love lives. Besides, he has a feeling she'd look beautiful in battle.

"Mmm. Something strong., too taxing on the antidotes and ethers. We want a profit." He ponders, already mentally perusing the boards he'd seen around the city.

Looking down, though, he nods. "Stay for dinner. You have worn yourself ragged. A good meal would do you well."
Hati "Mom." This seems to be Hati's answer when it comes to who her brother learned from. Alas, as much as her mother had tried to protect her from Odin's wrath, there was only so much she could manage. There is a part of the wolf-girl that still can't understand why her mother didn't just leave, but perhaps she had stayed for Skoll. Without her, he would likely not be the man that he is today, but it came at the sacrifice of that darkness that lingers in Hati.

Without offering more explination than that, the wolf grabs up her bag, shaking her head. "Skoll is still missing. I can't rest until he's been found." The wolf does look tired... exhausted actually. Alas, she'll probably continue her search until she falls over. There is dedication there, and her own sort of zealotry when it comes to the things she cares about. "I've spent enough time dawdling here, but I'd hoped maybe there would be some new trail I could pick up."

At first, it seems as if the wolf will leave it at that, but instead, she continues, "And I wanted to see you." Her ears are still tucked down, but she offers him a wan sort of smile. "I wanted to at least get you the burn salve, and return your robes. But I've wasted enough of your time and mine. Once Skoll is safe, we can find a suitable mark and hunt it down. It will be a... fun sort of challenge." With an inclination of her head, which is just a bit too formal, the wolf tugs at her bag. "Good day, Faruja. I'll see you again soon."

At least there is some promise in that.
Faruja Senra Reflexively, Faruja crosses his chest. He remembers the pain of losing his own Mother well. And worst, having nothing left behind to bury. The Burmecian nods and glances away. A tear escapes him, for a moment grieving for a pair of women lost. Turning back, his muzzle opens, then shuts as if reconsidering his words. A long moment passes.

"...Our services are open to Ser Ulfang and yourself." Is all he says. Not that he really thinks Hati or Skoll would take him up on the offer, but it's the least a properly religious Ajoran can do for someone they care about.

A stiff nod comes from the ratling. "Of course. Take what you need from our supplies. Just be careful. And if you find whomever took him, Nevermind. Their fate is yours to decide." If it were the rat, he doubt he'd leave anything left of someone who would steal his sister. "Lord bless your hunt."

The smile is returned, the Burmecian not bothering to hid his confliction...and his sorrow.

"Hati, 'twas not time wasted. You are good company. Yes. Find him. Mayhap we shall put up a wager depending upon whom gets the kill, hmm?" The smile turns to a challenging smirk.

"My door is always open. Or my window, if you prefer. 'Tis a promise." Standing, the Burmecian salutes before opening his door, and stepping out. After a massage like that, there's nothing like a bath to finish relaxing. Besides, he had a few things to think about.

This scene contained 27 poses. The players who were present were: Faruja Senra, Hati