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    version 22: awakening

    COTY

    GHAUL -- Year 209

    QOTY

    "(souls are not meant to live more than once — death was not meant to be temporary, and she is so sure that every time her heart starts to beat again that irreversible damage is further inflicted)" -- Anonya, written by Colby


    I'd Like To Make Some New Friends (Any)
    #1
    Alcinia could not wait for the day when her dam would finally allow her to go to the Playground, and now that it was here, the filly was bristling and ready for some excitement. Nalia had held her back for the first few months to make sure she was healthy, so said the paint mare, but to Alcinia, her dam seemed to be hiding part of the truth.

    She knew there was a Plague going around though; was that what her dam was so afraid of? Oh well, the filly didn't waste time worrying about it, not when she was due to have some long overdue fun.

    The morning of Nalia's promise, the filly and mare departed Nerine bright and early, having told Ardashir goodbye the night before since he returned to the Isle as part of the council. Alcinia wasn't clear on all the details yet really, only that her dam said her sire had an important job on their Isle home and he had to be there often so to help the other horses that lived there to make sure it was safe.

    Alcinia had begged her dam to explain more, but Nalia had simply said 'when you're older' before drawing her attention back to the main purpose of today. The filly wanted to grill her dam for answers, but the closer they got to the Playground, the more excited she got. When it was within view, the filly bid her dam goodbye and raced off to go explore, Nalia remaining within reach and grazing on the meadow grass just outside the playground.

    Meanwhile, the filly picked up a fast gallop and started racing through the playground, kicking up her hind legs in a show of excitement and letting out a series of playful whinnies. It didn't seem to be particularly busy today, but there was plenty of things to keep her busy.

    Alcinia's brain was on overload from all the things to explore. There was large log trees to jump over, which she cleared with ease; a number of tall trees stretching to the sky that the filly raced in between as it she was in competition, but her favorite was one of the bigger ponds she'd found not far from a thicket. The filly threw her head and front legs up in the air, kicking out in joy, before bringing her weight down and kicking up a splash of water onto her fur and skin.

    Dousing herself, Alcinia laughed in good nature as she kept looking around. She couldn't quite explain it, but this place... it made her feel safe, somehow. She was still unaware of the fairy that kept a watch over the foals here so that their parents did not have to be by their side every second. Whatever the case, Alcinia was just excited to be out of Nerine and here, stretching her legs on her own.

    The filly continued to splash in the large pond for a while before she decided to go do some more exploring, on the lookout for other foals that might be here that she could be friends with.
    Reply
    #2
    Seale

    Daddy and Momma do not want Seale to leave the isle. Momma has been very strict about this. Momma worries a lot. She does not like trees, or the ocean at night. Sometimes she gets really scared or angry and Seale doesn’t understand why. Daddy doesn’t seem to either but momma is better when he is around. He has another family and so sometimes he is busy and Seale and momma have to leave him alone.

    That’s why it isn’t too hard to get away, because when daddy comes Seale is usually sent to play after a while. She is so fast! She runs down to the rocky beach and leaps into the cold, cold water (she has been practicing swimming, first in the pond and then in the sea) and kicks hard for Nerine. The fuzzy girl dries off and takes a nap in a warm little cave. Nerine was momma’s old home.  It is windier than the isle and not as pretty, but there are a few foals her age and Seale soon begins following a bouncy girl and her mother as they head inland.

    Seale stalks them, lifting her little dark legs up high and putting them down again as quiet as a mouse. Of course they often get away from her because she is creeping so quiet and slow or gets distracted and plays along the way, so she has to run to not lose them. Finally they stop and the other girl dashes off by herself into a little thicket. Seale’s violet eyes flick toward the stranger’s momma who has settled to graze in the big meadow and then she trots into the thicket herself.

    While the girl from Nerine runs and jumps and plays, Seale inspects the boundaries of this strange safe place that smells of youngsters and something else that she doesn’t have a name for yet. At one point she glimpses a creature the color of forest who watches her with wings that glitter in the cool shadows but it just gives her a smile and fades away behind a tree. Seale walks around that tree twice sniffing for the fairy before realizing it has disappeared.

    A big splash draws her attention and Seale bounds through the trees toward the sound to find the Nerine-girl splashing herself through in a shallow pond. Sneaking has gotten boring, so Sealy trots up to the edge of the pond to intercept the drenched grulla girl. “Hi, I’m sea-lee She says her own name in a sing-song way. “I followed you here! Did you know?” She wears a delighted smile either way, her amethyst eyes warm and friendly.

    she told me she was shallow; her rivers run so deep
    if I could only be the boat that leads her to the sea



    Alcinia
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    #3
    Alcinia had barely stepped out of the pond to give herself a good shaking off when another filly close to her age suddenly appeared, her eyes bright with curiosity and excitement. The grulla filly squealed in shock for a moment, not having expected someone to sneak up on her like that, but she didn't let it phase her for long.

    The Isle-born filly stuck out her nose and sniffed at the stranger before she, the stranger, said that she followed Alcinia and her dam here from Nerine. So that meant she had to have come from the ocean-edge kingdom as well...

    Even though they weren't that old yet, Alcinia found it hard to believe she had not yet seen this filly in Nerine much. Perhaps she could have come over from the Isle? Nalia had told Alcinia they were staying on the mainland for a period of time so she could have some time at the playground before they would go back to the Isle together.

    Sure, her dam could go there whenever she wanted, with those wings of hers, especially with more freedom now that Alcinia was no longer dependent on her milk. But Alcinia was also beginning to miss the Isle where she was born, so when the day came that her dam made a return trip, the filly wouldn't hesitate.

    Unless this new friend proved to be too much fun that is.

    The grulla's lips curled up into a wide smile, her eyes shinning as she bounced from one front hoof to the other for a moment, "Hi Sealee," she stated, doing her best to pronounce the name correctly, "I'm Alcinia. Whoa, you followed my mom and I from Nerine? That's so far though; did you come with you mom too? Where are you from? You smell like Isicle Isle... is that where you're from?" the filly questioned in rapid succession.

    Seale
    Reply
    #4
    Seale

    Seale’s light baby pelt will give way to a dark chocolate color by springtime, but her face and legs are already silver black and her pretty eyes are striking in her young face. She does not look like her mother in any way except for those eyes.

    “Yes! I’m from Icicle Isle, my momma didn’t come with me because I’m not supposed to leave but I wanted to go somewhere. Are you from Nerine? What’]s your mom’s name? She lets you go places.” They exchange a flurry of questions and answers, and Seale switches her little flaxen tail excitedly. She reaches out to sniff the other filly, and thinks that she smells a little bit like home after all. This is exciting. Seale doesn’t know any other colts or fillies  in the Isle. Momma is shy sometimes and they tend to keep themselves apart from everyone else.

    “This place is neat. I saw a fairy.” She bursts, spinning in a quick circle to look all around them before scooting close to Alicinia to nose at her pale gray neck. A pair for chickadees swoop past over their heads and Seale’s violet eyes flash after them before returning to the other filly, excited to learn the secrets of this new place.

    she told me she was shallow; her rivers run so deep
    if I could only be the boat that leads her to the sea



    Alcinia
    Reply
    #5
    "Yeah! My mom and I live on the Isle, but we go to Nerine a lot too! Her name is Nalia; she works to help keep the kingdom peaceful and welcomes new faces. I told her I wanted to come out here today and she said I could if she came so she was nearby." Alcinia wouldn't lie, she was slightly disappointed that her dam was still so protective and said they could go to the playground if the mare was allowed to stay close.

    "You saw a fairy?! Where? That's so cool!" the filly exclaimed, jumping from her front hooves to her back hooves a couple times, her excitement peaked at the idea of there being a fairy nearby the fillies could possibly try to find.

    Seale
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