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    version 22: awakening


    OCEANE -- Year 208


    "Because if she had not met him, she knew she would have been searching her whole life for the piece that he filled her heart with." -- Eva, written by Shelbi

    if you talk enough sense then you'll lose your mind | brine

    I V A R
    i'll use you as a makeshift gauge
    of how much to give and how much to take
    The granite cliffs turn the water black earlier in the evening than Ivar had remembered, and the kelpie is grateful.

    He’s forgotten much of this place that he once called home. Drifting in the cold spring sea, the piebald creature has had plenty of time to think back on those years. He has not. Instead he thinks of the most recent time he had been here. He’s no longer sure which one he’d been with – brown or speckled or pied – but it does not much matter. All are happy memories for the sharp-toothed creature, and he intends to make more tonight.

    It is too risky these days to hunt the Ischian beaches. The nereids seem to be on alert, though Ivar can’t imagine why. It simply never occurs to him it might be the recent theft of the Dame’s children. His mares hardly react to losing their children anymore, and the possibility that Aquaria might miss her children enough to search for them does not cross his mind. Aquaria is not hypnotized, of course.

    Not yet.
    She will be though, and with that in mind Ivar chooses waters that carry less inherent chance of discovery.

    The blackwaters of Nerine are perfect for this.For a few hours he occupies himself with chasing seals, but as the hours creep toward midnight he ventures ever closer to the shore. He is waiting - for what he is not sure - but as the tide pushes him into ever-shallower water he does not resist.

    Eventually he stands on the night-black sand, with the waves softly tugging at his fetlocks. The moon overhead blanches his piebald markings and turns the rest of his glittering coat grey, though when the kelpie turns toward a sound behind him the gold of his scales catches the light. It is only a night heron, returning to a nest high in the cliffs. Ivar watches as it disappears into the shadows only to soar out again a few seconds later, having left the silvery fish it carried with a mate and chicks in the nest. It returns to shore to stalk the edge of the tide, and Ivar continues to watch it until he grows bored.

    Then there is movement farther down the beach, movement that draws the hunter closer in a way the scrawny fowl never could. The kelpie is selective in his prey, after all, and while his belly is still full of too-slow seal, there is no quieting the primal hunger. His long legs remain in the surf as he moves, his progress slow and unhurried. The full moon aids his progress as the sandy beach grows narrower and he must pick for footholds among the granite that had fallen en mass from the cliffside a hundred years earlier. The waves have begun to soften the rough edges of the boulders, but it will be many hundreds more years before this northern shore is as wide as the rest of the beach.


    and i'll use you as a warning sign
    that if you talk enough sense then you'll lose your mind


    I turned off my light, harder to find
    that way

    Surely there are lots of things that come to mind when you’re going to die. They say you hear new sounds, smells are more vibrant, you notice things you wouldn’t have noticed before. They say you find clarity, as if everything in life leading up to that moment will suddenly make sense.

    They say you served a purpose.

    She stands a lone mouse amongst a sea of cats and owls. As the sun descends behind the water, she makes her way down the ragged cliff edge until her black hooves blend into the night sand and water begins to rush its way around her pasterns. The soft wind, the silence, it inhales her as the night sky always did.

    The only time she feels alive was when everyone else feels dead.

    Her mind always trickles to Ruthless, once her whole golden world and now no more meaningful than the stallion who helped create her. In the end, it is true. Brine has never been ready to raise a child, and running has always been her greatest strength.

    She wonders what her golden child has grown to, with her shadowed wings and wild eyes. She wonders if perhaps Ruth has had a child, or if she’s made some friends. Do they treat her well? Has she been hurt?

    Does it matter if she has been? Brine knew her right to that knowledge had been forfeited the moment her small, naive fawn had disappeared into the treeline with the accompany of the Taigan recruiters. And yet, she had allowed it. So much so that she had even turned herself towards a different direction, a better direction. A new life.

    A joke.

    Wind lefts from the north, lifting her mane as if waving a surrendering flag. But our little shadow doesn’t know that yet, she doesn’t know who lingers in the depths of the water.

    [Image: Brine-Signature.png]

    I V A R
    i'll use you as a makeshift gauge
    of how much to give and how much to take
    There is more moonlight than Ivar would prefer on a hunt, but it there are few enough other risks on this hunt. The light makes the mare easy to see, at least, even with her coloring. The wind is with him, and so he knows it is not his cold roan. Something new, then, something he has not had a dozen times before.

    Perhaps he should hunt outside of Ischia more often.

    “Going for a swim?” Ivar asks as he draws near. His golden eyes leave her so that he might better pick his way across the rocky beach (though his sapphire ears never do). He sounds only mildly interested, as though he asks out of politeness for finding her on this beach and nothing more. The kelpie doesn’t come near enough that conversation seems his intent tonight. Instead, he makes his way to the edge of the water, extending one pale foreleg into the water. He draws it back with a start, as though surprised by the chill, and then puts it in again, and soon stands a few paces from shore, the water at his knees.

    “Used to warmer water,” He says offhandedly, polite without meaning to intrude on the solitude. It seems clear he means to take a swim himself and not to bother her here on the shore for much longer. But he’d spoken to her, and he knows that it’s considered rude not to at least wait for an answer. Ivar is unconcerned with such trivialities, of course, but he has found that prey is often calmed by the familiar. They are drawn in like other things too, of course, like the half-smile on his curious face while he watches her over his shoulder.


    and i'll use you as a warning sign
    that if you talk enough sense then you'll lose your mind

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