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Ktulu the Constrictor Posts: 509
Outcast atk: 5.0 | def: 9.5 | dam: 6.5
Mare :: Hybrid :: 16.1 :: 7 HP: 70.5 | Buff: ENDURE
Eytan :: Grizzly Bear :: Terrorize ali

         K T U L U         

i hate what i've become
the nightmare's just begun

Ktulu hadn't called the Deep Forest home for some time, but as she walked beneath the canopy she couldn't help but feel like she was finally home. The darkness and solitude was just as welcome as it always was and the memories that came flooding back were enough to make her heartsick. It was under those trees that she'd formed the Grey with her sister, it was where she'd bonded with Lakota, where she'd met Archibald, where she'd gotten Eytan and been granted magic from the ancient bear, and where she'd watched Hototo run and play in the early months of his life. Eytan, too, had the feeling of being home as he walked with his bonded. He never let on to her just how much he missed the forest, but as they stood there together she knew

For a long time Ktulu had suspected that she was not truly someone who belonged in a herd. She did not play well with others -- they often took offense to the things said and the actions she took. She felt that being in an outcast group was much more satisfying than being in a herd because in a group of outcasts everyone had to take responsibility for themselves. There was no warrior or champion to run and hide behind when things got tough. You did what you needed to do to survive and if you didn't then you died. 

The dark mare started forward again, moving down trails that she knew well.  There was so much she wanted to say, so much she wanted to vocalize and yet she remained quiet and allowed the feelings of nostalgia to wash over her. There was knowledge in the back of her mind that she could call the forest home again. She could leave the Falls to their own devices, let them pick out another Champion, someone who wasn't tired... but her loyalty was her downfall. She'd promised Archibald when they'd invaded that she would stay and she had. But for how much longer? 

The path twisted and turned as it wound through the forest and when it ended Ktulu found herself standing at the pool in the center of the forest. Eytan stood at the very edge of the pool with her, the pair of them staring down at their reflections. "Look at us, Eytan." She finally spoke, her voice hushed. "When did we get so old?" And what have we done with our lives?




Icon by Tay

Knox Posts: 262
Outcast atk: 4 | def: 7.5 | dam: 6.5
Stallion :: Equine :: 17hh :: 7 Years [Tallsun] HP: 67.5 | Buff: NOVICE

Knox, too, suffers from the sickness called loyalty. It wears at his bones until they are brittle, eats away at his mind like a parasite. Each passing day makes him more addled, more lost. He wears his ancestors' flesh but doesn't remember, not really, if it is he that wears their ghosts or they that borrow his mind. It's too long ago, too late now. It doesn't much matter, does it?

His son is a disappointment, or maybe he is. Knox walks through the woods, in his father's younger body, and forgets where he is. Where he was born, or where he died? No, Roanne died. But why isn't he Roanne? Shouldn't he be? He finds himself trying to shapeshift, calling upon Roanne's long dead magic. He wants to fly into the trees, to leap down from them as a creature he no longer can be. Knox's neck extends and arches, and he lets out a cry in his father's voice. He expects it to sound like everything, animals put together in one body but suffering all as one, and it only sounds like the bitter echo of his own failure.

These are the days of again, of growing old. Was he great once, or could he simply have been? Potential does not equal actuality, grace differs from aging. Knox doesn't quite believe that anyone ages well. After all, look at his brother? Just as Knox is dumbed down by his loyalty to Archibald, doesn't the Dauntless bear the weight of a lost love?

No, Knox at least does not let these things hurt him. Aylin is gone but he will not cry, never again. Milo is broken but he will not say it is his fault, even if it is. He will be contentedly callous, and he will live this way for as long as the world lets him.

The sight of Ktulu in the near distance, the sound of her complaint, does not trigger what it should in him. Knox walks forward without thought, failing to check his memory for whether or not this mare knows him or Roanne, or anything at all. Just before coming into her plane of vision, though, he shifts back into his own form. No, surely she doesn't know him, and if she did once he can't believe that she'll remember him. No one really does, anymore, and he likes it that way.

"Time is cruel," Knox says from the dark, not addressing her for he would not expect the Constrictor to address him. Oh yes, he knows her. He knows her from the days of the Grey, when she ruled alongside Ophelia and the Falls stood for honor. But grace and aging cannot coexist. Even herds and worlds falter at the edge of time.


Make no mistake I don't do anything for free
I keep my enemies closer than my mirror ever gets to me
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