Hidden 1 mo ago Post by 6slyboy6
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6slyboy6 The More Awesomest Potato

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Day 1, Week 1, Cycle 1
Springtime, 21 C°, Sunny


Today the sun rises over the familiar horizon to gree a vasty different world. The pleasant warmth of the orange glow washes over two islands of the Continent, greeting it's denizes the same way it ahs done for thousands if not hundreds of thousands of years. But today is different. There is an inexplicable feeling in the air, just like before a storm, but there are no clouds to be seen. Whatever it might be, it fills the hearts of everyone alive with a sense of clarity. The sound of the wind, the chirping of the birds, the lone deer in the forest calling for it's mate all joining together into a beautiful, yet frightening cacaphony.

For all those who can hear this strange melody have entered into a world they are familair with but do not know yet. Just yesterday these same creatures were just a little more than some primitives with little concept of what they were doing. But today, this will all change forever. With a sense of self and time, the souls who have been touched by the warm glow of the rising sun will endure challenges seemingly impossible to overcome on their way to writing themselves into the history books that they themselves will be writing in a thousand years.

On the Western island a wide array of races stir from their slumber. No doubt they will set out to do greath things with a new set of goals in their mind by the time the sun will reach it's zenith, but only they will know what those goals will be. The weather is beautiful and spring has just rolled across the land, the flowers are blooming across the vast grasslands of the western island and big game is plentiful in the dense forests of the eastern island. Herds and flocks of bird return to their mating areas and the snow begins melting in the moutnains, creating small rivers and lakes at their feet. The moment is perfect for any prospecting species to begin exploring and thinking about the future: the cycle has just started and there is still ample time until winter returns to the land again, bringing with it frost and white death that will test the resolve of it's inhabitants.

What they will make of this time is entirely up to them and their decisions. Only time will tell what will become of them, and what they will all do in the coming cycles. Spanning from the lizard races of the western mountains, through the amphibians of the strai connecting the islands to the gigantic furballs of the east, these different races all have something in common: a sense of divine guidance, a direction to head towards as the sun slowly creeps over the horizon and casts is rays far above the earth, ushering in a new era at the Dawn of Civilization...



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Hidden 1 mo ago 1 mo ago Post by Odin
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Odin Death is the only God that comes when you call

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Day 1, Week 1, Cycle 1: Heidevolk Awakening
Springtime, 21 C°, Sunny


It is imperative to the social training of any young Volk to play with their peers and elders to foster a sense of community within the troop, and to help the young understand social cues that are of the utmost importance when it comes to survival in the wild. The troop had parked themselves atop a ridge, overlooking the heath fields of a great plain filled with rolling hills, which colored purple at the end of every summer, as if they had been painted by some celestial being with large swaths of heath, but were grass-colored at this time. At the edge of this ridge the young were playing, chasing each other around on all fours, despite the fact that the Volk had long since developed the ability to walk straight. It seemed that the thought had simply not crossed them until then to actually permanently make use of this ability. As the young Volk played together, the elders were busy picking berries from the midst of the many plants in the area, and preoccupied themselves with eating them right away. The thought of creating vessels to carry extra berries had never occurred to these primitive creatures.

One of the elder Volk, with six large set of curved horns, suddenly looked up and surveyed the field in front of them -- in the distance, a singular large oak tree stood atop a hill that rolled gently, but was by all means one of the larger hills in the area. It seemed as if perhaps one of the same celestial beings that had colored the hills purple had also placed this hill here, perhaps with the tree included. But, it seemed that the Volk did not realize this, or perhaps simply did not see the beauty in it. To the left of the tree, far, far in the distance was an ocean, an area that the Volk had until then never even considered exploring. There had never been any need. And to the right, where the heathfields ended, there was the forest, a place that the Volk had explored, and a place which they preferred to use for shelter in the cold winter months.

But the elder Volk did not seem interested in these two features either. Rather, the Volk lifted one of his hands as he stood up straight, righting himself in the face of the majestic view that was laid bare in front of him. His hand moved higher and higher until it covered the sun, and the Volk was standing up straight. ... contemplation seemed to follow, but the area remained eerily quiet except for the quiet chittering of the young Volk, who were still running around chasing each other, one of them having grabbed a stick with which it threatened to beat the other.

Until suddenly, “... HUH,” the old Volk that had inspected his own hand released a guttural sound, confused with the prospect of the apparent realization that he was now in control of his movements - no, that he could decide his own movements, no longer governed by primal instincts that drove him to survive and nothing more. “HUH,” he spoke again, raising another hand to where he held the other, before looking around. Slowly but surely, the rest of the troop caught on, and began inspecting themselves. The children, which had previously been running on all fours, slowly but surely stood up and righted themselves like the old Volk had. Their eyes were fixed on the old one, before they themselves began to inspect their own hands, moving around as if they had been possessed by some spirit. And if anyone with a spark of intelligence had seen these creatures dancing around in the heath, they might have wondered what kind of savage, primitive creatures these were, and why they were dancing for no reason; but to the Volk, this feeling of control over not just the body but also the self had given their life a whole new meaning.

In fact, the fact that they could now ascribe a certain meaning to their life was proof in and of itself of their sudden on-brought intelligence.

Their eyes turned to the large tree in the middle of the heath fields, a tree that had previously been entirely irrelevant to the Volk because it produced neither food nor shelter, two stimuli that would've previously pushed the Volk's limited brain functions to the edge. Instead, the tree just seemed to attract them as they became aware of its beauty. The question was whether or not the Volk were aware of the implications of their new thoughts, but it seemed that the Volk were far too stimulated by literally everything around them to care. Something as simple as the touch of a long piece of grass was enough to give young Volk pause, as the sensation of touch was something they knew, but also something that they had never experienced so vividly as they were experiencing it now.

The troop drew closer and closer to the tree, being stalled only by their young continuing to dance around -- on two legs this time -- while experimenting with their new acute awareness of their senses. A good few steps away from the large oak tree was a small pond, filled with the water of a stream that came from the forest nearby. The stream seemed to carry mist with it, and for the first time the Volk seemed to be aware of it, several drops of mist and morning dew giving their face a wet feel. And for the first time, the Volk felt inclined to wipe it off with their hands.

In the small pond, there were bubbles, and yet again, the sudden realization that bubbles equated aquatic life seemed to thrill the Volk, who were grunting among themselves in attempts to convey meaning. It was clear that these primitives had only ever communicated through rough grunts and body language in their time as animals, and so communication became a bit of a struggle. Within seconds, one of the Volk had grabbed a long stick, and began using it as a club to beat the water in an attempt to scare out whatever animals were lurking beneath. And so came the advent of primitive tools. Their application, although relatively clever for primitives that had been animals not even ten minutes ago, still needed some adjustment, but what could one truly expect from these savages?







By the time nightfall had arrived, the troop had made a camp -- if one could call it that -- consisting of large wooden sticks foraged from the forest put into the ground so that it could support more sticks, upon which dirt and mud would be placed to make the structure somewhat resistant against the elements. The shelters looked crude and uncomfortable, but the Volk seemed very impressed with themselves. How could they not be -- this morning, the end result of their day would have been to fall asleep in the heath fields without a shelter, so the very fact that they had conjured up the idea of even building a shelter was groundbreaking to them.

And it seemed that the splashing around with the makeshift club in the water had also resulted in at least one dead fish -- a very small one. And, although the eldest Volk had somehow managed to create fire by rubbing sticks together as part of his experimentation of using 'tools,' the concept of cooking the fish had not entered their mind yet. Unfortunately for the fish, he was bitten in the neck while still alive, though his suffering ended soon after. The fish was passed along the circle of Volk sitting around the fire, as a communal meal of sorts, while berries were passed around the other way.

The biggest, meanest looking Volk, with the biggest and sturdiest horns of them all, stood up and raised his hand into the sky, and he proclaimed proudly, “HUH HUHAHA! HUA HUA HEEEEHHH...!,” and so it was proclaimed that, despite their best efforts, the Volk had still not mastered the art of communication. The rest of the Volk cheered him on and beat their hands onto the ground next to them as a sign of agreement, though it was very unclear to everyone what the Strongvolk had actually said.





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Hidden 1 mo ago Post by Ascendant
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Ascendant No One In Particular

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Mordukai


For millennia, if not hundreds or even thousands of millennia, the oversized ants that would become known as Mordukai simply dug their nests, laid and hatched their eggs, spread, and consumed mindlessly. Though their ancestors were much more diminutive both physically and mentally, they never grasped one of the most central tenets of sapience - self-awareness. The Nest, or the Hive, or simply the community of Mordukai, operated as much as any other nest of insects operated.

And for some reason, something changed one day.

A massive Soldier ant stood up on its hind legs at the mouth of the nest, surveying the land as far as it could see, ensuring no predators had a chance to even begin to threaten the Queen within. It collected sensations from both of its eyes, as well as its antenna which told it even more information about pheromones and smells in the airs, smells which often signalled predators before the ant people saw them as long as the ants were downwind.

Its eyes sent plenty of impulses to its brain, but there was no true life within them. At best, the Mordukai were biological machines, nothing more than animals.

Over the period of perhaps a quarter second, however, an indescribable and recognizable yet invisible light grew in those very eyes.

Where once stood an almost perfectly motionless ant, save for a head scanning from side to side slowly, was now an ant wildly swinging its limbs and head around, intensely surprised to simply... exist. It seemed utterly impossible. When one moment there seemed to have been nothing, and the next, this Mordukai existed in a way no Mordukai had before.

It slammed claws into the ground, ripped up grass and brought to its eyes, felt its own antennae. Bewilderment had become the Soldier.

A Worker emerged from the nest, tiny, barely two and a half feet tall compared to the Soldier's seven feet. Apparently drawn out by the noise, it was incredibly surprised when it found itself hanging upside down, a leg clutched in the Soldier's grip, eyes staring into eyes. Anger then flooded the Worker as it took a few swings at the Soldier, unable to communicate that it wanted down. The Soldier cared not, holding the hapless ant just far enough away as to avoid getting hit, moving its sibling this way and that, observing it.

Nonchalantly, the Soldier tossed the Worker at least ten feet and turned to enter the nest as its victim impacted the ground and began to return to its feet.

The nest itself was little more than a giant burrow in the middle of the side of a forested hill, leading first down, then up to avoid flooding, and then down once more to tap into the more consistent temperatures of the depths. The tunnel to the Queen's Chamber was intentionally just small enough to force the Soldier to crawl on all sixes.

In comparison to the tunnel, the Queen's Chamber was like a vast open cavern, though in reality it too was little more than an oblong dug-out hole perhaps six feet high at most with reinforced dirt walls. The Soldier had to rely entirely upon feeling the ground and its antennae to navigate since there was absolutely no light present. As it clambered deeper and deeper, it felt something else, a pounding that grew rapidly within its chest.

The pounding reached a crescendo as the Soldier's antennae made contact with the slim thorax and head of the Queen. Her own antennae danced with the Soldiers', and the feeling they shared would later become known as Love. The love of a Queen towards her children, and her children towards their mother.

Two sets of claws intertwiced as the Mordukai felt one another. The Queen, almost small for the most part at no more than four feet tall if she were able to stand, possessed an abdomen that must've weighed on the order of a thousand pounds. It was this abdomen that the Soldier began feeling, working its way backward, until it reached the end. There, the Soldier once more felt love as it discovered a set of eggs, deciding to pick one up and examine it more closely.

The egg itself seemed quite sturdy, and would be clearly brown if the Soldier could actually see the damn thing. No more than perhaps six inches in height, it was tiny in comparison to the Soldier.

Gently, the Soldier returned the egg to its place, the Worker from earlier rushing inside and swatting at the Soldier to get it to leave the eggs alone on instinct. The blows were nothing to the greater beast, which exited the nest promptly and took a good look around.

Typical pine trees covered the area, sunlight streaming down when it could pierce the thick needly canopy. It was clearly still close to dawn, though the Soldier was not quite aware of that fact just yet. All it knew was that there was light present. Songbirds flitted from branch to branch, spinning their tunes in the air which were picked up by filaments on the Soldier's antennae.

It was a tremendous experience, but the Soldier knew deep down it could not leave its post for the moment.

Hours passed as the beams of light changed direction, mystifying the Mordukai as it watched the environment for predators. It didn't take long to make the connection between light and the Sun shining above the ant, as holding up a leaf between the Sun and anything else produced a shadow, a shadow that moved given enough time. How exactly this occurred though, the ant hadn't the faintest clue.

Another Soldier approached, followed by four Workers carrying the bloodied, half-eaten corpse that resembled a deer. The pair appraised each other as the hunting party approached, a gut feeling of familiarity popping into their minds. The original Soldier ripped off the 'deer's' hindleg as its fellow took up post next to the entrance of the nest, the Workers travelling inside with the catch for the Queen.

Mandibles ripping and tearing at the meat, the Soldiers stared at one another. It seemed clear to them that the Workers were beneath Soldiers, but between Soldiers, it wasn't quite so obvious who was who, in a sense. It was a fledging concept that the original didn't bother with for long, walking into the forest to explore as it treated the hindleg much like a human would treat a lollipop.

Not far off, the forest cleared into a pleasant, rolling grassland with herds of some large animal grazing upon them. They must have been at least three or four times the weight of the deer creature from earlier, and the Mordukai wasn't particularly interested in getting much closer at that moment to get a better look.

By this point, the light was beginning to become more orange, giving the Soldier its first look at a brilliant sunset with firey hues dancing across the clouds, the great circle of life beginning to disappear behind a distant, tree-covered horizon. The Mordukai made note of the existence of this thing, a horizon, and returned back to the Nest.

Tossing the bones aside not far from the entrance, the Soldier sat next to its comrade, who was faithfully watching for enemies. A third Soldier appeared from within the nest, looked at the second Soldier, and then sat next to the original. This third was apparently the night's watch, having spent the day slumbering beneath the earth.

The trio sat and stood there, staring at one another, unsure of what to do. Perhaps out of sheer boredom and perhaps out of some kind of direction, the original picked up two pieces of wood and observed them closely. Deciding to rub one vigorously against the other, the pieces caught fire a few moments later, surpising the Soldier who dropped them unceremoniously on the ground. The other Soldiers also took a few steps back before slowly closing the distance again, waving their claws over the fire, prodding it, feeling its heat.

They sat there around the two small fires for some time before they began to die down, staring into the ever-moving tendrils of flame. The original felt some sadness as the fires died down before it decided to prod the pair closer together and add more wood, watching as the flames gained strength and spread along the new fuel slowly. As night fell, three Mordukai sat in complete silence around their first campfire.



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Hidden 1 mo ago 1 mo ago Post by Raylah
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Raylah

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The sun was slowly rising above the mountains on the far horizon and the tribe members were waking up, moving around to warm up their blood and bodies. One male R’Bani stood at the side of the raft, finding himself unable to take his eyes off the scenery. The thick fog over the water was slowly dissipating - normally that would mean to him that the weather would be good this day, the sun will shine and no storms and heavy rains will threaten the raft. But today, there was something else, something deeper that he couldn’t really explain, that kept him almost frozen.

A sudden impulse made him pick up a large leaf and, dipping his fingers into warm lake water, draw a few lines on it. Just one straight long line and two smaller above it, forming a small triangle. After a short look at the horizon, he added a small circle peeking from behind the triangle. “G’Arr!” he exclaimed, a previously unknown but very pleasant feeling filling him. But as he looked at the leaf again, he noticed that the lines he made were slowly disappearing, water drying up under the first rays of the morning sun.

“G’ARR!” he yelled again, angrily. He liked that sound, felt like it is his own sound, like it describes him. At first he wanted to throw the leaf away, but a sudden idea came to his mind. Carefully laying the leaf on the ground, he jumped from the edge of the raft and swam to the lake floor, grabbing a load of mud. When he climbed back on the raft, he retraced the lines on the leaf, this time using mud instead of water.

A female came to him, curious about what he was doing. At first, it seemed to her like a result of mud battles the young ones tended to have from time to time. But then she raised her head to look at the horizon and opened her mouth in surprise, realizing that the long straight line is the lake, the triangle is the mountain above it, and the circle looks like the sun. “G’Arr,” she whispered in awe.

The male jumped angrily. That was his sound, his own, and others should not use it. “G’Arr,” he croaked at her, pointing at his chest.

She nodded, pointing at him, feeling a bit envious that he has his own sound. Now she wanted one too. She admired the painting on the leaf for a while and then picked up another leaf. Maybe she could make one too? But there was something else that caught her attention, she realized that the sun is not shining on her. Of course she knew that leaves provided shadow that was useful in merciless summer heat, so that her skin wouldn’t dry up, cracking painfully. But what if she used these leaves to actually create a protected place, instead of just hoping to find one when she needed it?

Soon she was deeply concentrated on trying to arrange the leaves into the shape that came to her mind. As the leaves wouldn’t stand on their own, she used some twigs as a support and mud to glue it together. She also found out that long straws of waterweed could be used to tie things together. It took her a while, but eventually she was satisfied with the results - a small hut supported by longer branches tied together, covered by leaves and mud. “Reea!” she clapped her hands excitedly, comparing her old den, merely a hole between the twigs, and this new thing she just invented.

Her old den was small and empty, no one else lived there. A sudden pain in her chest surprised her. Was she ill? Or injured? But the pain did not seem to have a physical cause. The feeling that came with it was very unpleasant and brought tears to her eyes. Her den was empty, yes, but it hasn’t always been that way, has it? She used to have a mate, a strong male that always brought the best food. Before. And now she doesn’t have him, after a huge predatory fish came unusually close to the shore and dragged him away. That was some days ago, she couldn’t even tell how many, because the thought of past and present never crossed her mind before. But there will also be tomorrow and more days in the future, perhaps she could find a new mate? Especially now that she has a new comfortable place to live in.

The thought of past and future occupied her mind. There were several tadpoles swimming around the raft, who will soon sprout legs and arms and climb from the water to join the tribe. That was always the time for both happiness but also great hunger for everyone, because there were suddenly so many mouths to feed. The R’Bani only gathered as much food as they could eat that day, but what if they brought a little bit extra every day and put it aside? That way the young ones would have something to eat before they learn to hunt and gather their own food.

“Reea,” she smiled and turned to the others who were already admiring her hut. It will be hard to communicate this complicated thought to the others, but she knew she could do it. After all, she managed to create her own sound. She wasn’t just one female R’Bani anymore. She was Reea now.


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Hidden 1 mo ago Post by Caelum
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Caelum

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The dawn of the Artias was simple, clean, and without much, if any incident. As a light rain fell down upon the branches and trees above, a group- 12 in total- Surrounded a fire they had created not far long ago. The invention of fire was a new thing- Most in the group had no idea about the concepts that were built around fire- Nor the tools that they had developed for them. They were all... New territory. New knowledge.

Surrounded by the fire, it was quickly established by the conglomerate that they had to work together. This was a pretty easy assumption as the group of 12 did not often stray far from each other- They all seemed complacent to work together. This was... Perfect, honestly. It meant there would be no worrisome quarrels or troubles for food and water...

Both of which, seemed to be in abundance. Of course, the first task they would all have to face would be getting out of the rain. Collectively, they had no names for each other- No built upon language. So they simply had to use hand gestures to tell the others exactly what they wanted to hear. Grunts and noises along with it, building upon the foundations.

Surrounded by woods and grasslands, they had two materials in abundance- Grass and wood. The most obvious idea was to take the sticks and create a rudimentary hut of wood. This... Was far beyond the knowledge they possessed. Instead, they decided to go with something far more simple...

Digging dens. With stone, crude digging elements, they would carry out the task of making ditches for each of them- And covering the tops with sticks and leaves, so rain would not fall upon their shelters.

Their sense of self was not as complex as others. Rather then try to understand why, it seemed for the Artias, existence in its current form was not why, but what. As in, what do they do with their gift, rather then question it.

And they did what they did best. Innovate and adapt.

Eyes watched around. They would need food as well. A noticeable river had ran down the center of their 'territory'. It was not easy to judge the width of it, but it was clear that it was filled with large fish. Collecting these large fish using only their hands was a rather foolish prospect. Instead, once again, they would have to innovate. Until then... Collecting berries and random foliage to test and eat would make up their time for next week or so, living in their small huts, communicating with simple grunts and hand signals.

The only thing that was certain each day- Was at the end of said day, all members- All 12 of them, would surround the fire at the center of the camp they had 'dug' up, and show each other their findings and gatherings for the day. They would eat together, work together. They were strong together, in numbers. They had no leader- Instead, they all worked together- At least, for now. They didn't need a leader yet.

Eventually, it was realized the light berries and shrubbery was not only dangerous, but not enough to feed the 12 people around the camp. They would have to work faster to collect the delicious fish they had seen running down the river. With that in mind, they used a very primitive method...

Impalement traps. It took two weeks, but development had completed on large, wooden spikes, that would cause the fish to impale themselves on the stakes. From there, it was easy collection.

So far, they had come together- They had founded their 'community'. They had a source of food, fresh water, and shelters. But they'd need far, far more then this. This was the beginning of something greater. But it'd be a long way to that greatness. For now, they were satisfied in understanding their position in the world.

A race of people living among their 'world'. For a reason they did not know, or care about for now. Instead, they had only one goal-

Survive.


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Hidden 1 mo ago Post by Schylerwalker
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Schylerwalker

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The broad leaves overhead swayed gently in an ocean-birthed wind. It smelt of good clean salt and sand. This smell mixed with the earthy scents of the forest-clad island; rich black earth, crushed needles, blooming flowers, pulped berries, the scat of the many wild animals who called this place home. For the most part, these animals lived in a quiet harmony with the Aslanta, who were little more than animals themselves. Slithering across rotten leaves and moss, rolling in the sand, frolicking in the waves, the Aslanta were foragers and even scavengers. Most were too lazy to do more than pluck berries or gather mushrooms. Their native island was small; while the Aslanta had no idea what a mile was, their island was a little over fifty to a side. Therefore, over several generations of the primitive creatures, they had explored the entire landmass, and discovered which plants and fungi were safe to eat, and those that most assuredly were not.

However, the Aslanta's favorite food would always come from the sea. Many Aslanta wandered the beaches, threading their way through the tough red-barked trees and hardy shrubs that flourished there, clambering over rocks and searching tidal pools. When they found a crab, or a clutch of mussels or clams, they would begin to smash the shellfish against a boulder or hardwood, with an almost childlike glee. Their bright laughter, innocent and joyous, provided a sweet counterpoint to the staccato pounding of shell against stone. From the sea itself the Aslanta would chase fish, mostly trout and salmon, even occasionally following them upstream during spawning season. This was a risky move, and often even a game for the bolder of the Aslanta. For the island did support a sizable black bear population, and they emerged from their caves, hungry and grumpy, and their tolerance for the mischievous salamander folk was low when they had just awoken.

An extended group of Aslanta dwelt on the northern shore of the island. Most Aslanta lived in groups of three to six, groups which freely interchanged members on a weekly or even daily basis. By nature, they were polygamous and often incestuous, though this was more due to the small population the island could support, and pure accident. Not that any of these simple creatures seemed to care. The largest Aslanta group numbered a nice round twelve. Their home was near the mouth of a river, which created a somewhat marshy delta. In this marsh was a secluded grotto, a limestone cave with ledges above the submerged tunnel the Aslanta used to enter and exit their home. On these ledges were simple beds of dried needles, surrounded by shattered shells and fishbones.

It was a day like any other when the Wind blew. But it was also a day unlike any other. It was a day that would be lost in the mists of time. It was unlikely that any Aslanta of future generations would remember this day. It was unlikely that any current Aslanta would remember this particular day. For their minds were simple, like unmolded clay, childish and fluid. That was, until they heard the wind. The family group of the northern shore were going about their usual activities. Most were swimming in the waves or foraging in the marsh, lazily looking for easy-to-find victuals. A few more were running up and down the beach, for the sweet simple joy of it, their gurgling laughter echoing across the waves as they kicked up plumes of sand. The last few were secluded in the shadows of a broad-leaved maple, engaged in more intimate recreation.

One of the runners stopped suddenly. The two chasing her bowled in to her, and the three went tumbling in a mess of flailing limbs, pained grunts, and surprised laughter. The two males immediately though they were moving on to another game, but the female impatiently pushed them away, her tail slapping across the startled face of one of them. They sat back in the sand, breathing heavily and watching her with wide, pale eyes. She stood, brushing the sand off. This was confusing to them as well; they looked down at themselves. Slowly, uncertainly, they too brushed the sand off of themselves, even picking away bits of seaweed and marsh muck. The female continued to ignore them. She began to walk away, mounting a large rock. Adopting an almost rakish pose, she leaned forward, watching, listening. One by one, her eleven kin stopped what they were doing. One by one, they all stood still, looking in the same direction that she did, looking, straining their poor ears and eyes.

For the Aslanta do not have good vision. They do not have particularly good hearing either. Their strongest sense is of touch. Of Feeling. They felt the water slowly drying on their velvety skin. They felt the salt waves gently lapping against their feet. And they felt the Wind, cold and mournful, dancing across their bodies, going in to their very bones, whispering a promise of things to come. It whispered a story across their sinuous frames. Of the joys they would know. Of the horrors they would witness. The female, who they had all now unconsciously acknowledged as their leader, shivered. She did not want to know things. She wanted to play. To have fun, to continue her ordinary existence under wave and sun. And while she would still know this happiness, she now too learned that all must work before they could play. At least a little.

She slid down from her rock, and waved the Aslanta over. It was an unfamiliar gesture to them. She repeated it, walking a little closer. Hesitantly, they began to make their way over a few at a time, until they were all gathered in a loose circle on the beach. Their leader pointed towards their grotto. They all turned to look at it, then back at her. She swept an errant leaf off of on their shoulders. This pantomime was repeated an embarrassing number of times before they got the picture. They descended into the grotto, emerging dripping in their subterranean home. With tentative, self-aware motions, they began to clean. Gathering up the shells, neatly arranging the beds. They brought in fresh needles, from a variety of trees, to create sweeter smells. Some gathered flowers. Others berries, many of the kind they didn't regularly eat. Many were distracted, but the Leader understood this. It was their nature. If she was to have their loyalty, work and play would have to occur in equal proportions.

So they took turns, beautifying their home and cavorting in the marshes. The flowers and berries were crushed and spread along the walls. Swirling patterns of bright colors mixed with darker palettes, creating an abstract impression of the intermingling of ocean, tide, and forest. Boughs of spruce and manzanita, their twigs snapped off, were arranged with thick bundles of hemlock and fir needles, and then further spread with softer broadleaves. The Leader gathered many of the shells and bones. Her followers watched in awe as she showed them how to make bowls and plates from which to eat their food, and utensils to lift it. One of the younger followers defiantly sank her teeth into a raw fish's side, the guts and flesh squirting out around her face; the Leader just laughed. She leaned forward and kissed the top of her follower's head, then affectionately began to clean off the mess.

With this done, there was one last thing they must do. The Leader took them all outside. They followed in an obedient line like ducklings, sometimes darting off the trail to pluck a new interesting flower. She led them in to the woods a ways as the day died; the shadows deepened, ferns tickled their calves, and their feet made no sound in the thick moss and mulch below. The Leader collected cedar bark, fungus from under the bark of a birch tree, hanging moss from a spruce tree, and scraped some resin from a snapped off branch. She did this all in a slow, dream-like state, the others watching in anticipation. They were uncharacteristically quiet, though some did chatter or chirp to each other in hushed tones. They stopped in a clearing. With an air of imperious command that brooked no argument, the Leader silently bade the others to sweep aside the fallen needles in the center of the clearing, as well as the dead brush and limbs. They did so. Then she bid them gather stones, of just this size, and arrange them in a circle. They obeyed. Then she gathered her materials and went to work.

In moments, a trickle of smoke rose from the circle. Then a tiny spark. Many of the Aslanta yelled, and a few fled to watch from behind wet trees. The boldest, the young female from earlier, ran forward to stop their Leader. The Leader turned; in one hand she held a burning brand. The young challenger stopped and fell to her knees, eyes wide and full of terror. Behind the Leader, the fire blazed larger, filling its stone cage and casting wild, flickering shadows around the clearing as the sun sank behind the waves. The Aslanta slowly emerged from their hiding places and approached. The Leader waved them forward, encouragingly, her smile huge and her eyes flickering in the firelight. Soon, the Aslanta forgot their fear, for here was a wondrous new toy. And in mere moments, the group went from dread to joy, and all were engaged in a wild dance around the fire. They danced for hours, and filled the forest with a simple song, though it was perhaps more complex than it had been a few hours ago. And when the fire had burned low, they made their way home, gathering more supplies to make more fire, and more tools. For work and play must occur in equal parts, for the Good of the Tribe.


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Hidden 1 mo ago 1 mo ago Post by Crusader Lord
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The Crowe





The young huntress panted, her quivering and labored breaths appearing in the cool high-altitude air like small puffs of steam. From where she lied upon the ground, she might as well have been as dead as the bear that now lied next to her in the same pool of blood. Its great brown and hulking hide had only mere seconds ago been hefting itself upon her, having intruded upon the young female Crowe's freshly killed stag. But in the heat of the moment...with her life and hunt on the line...something had clicked in the young female's head.

She grabbed for a nearby branch, straight enough on its length and after then jaggedly sharp on the broken end, and jammed it upwards towards the towering predator before her. It was an action that had felt as natural as breathing, though initially she hadn't understood why she'd done such a thing. But as the mighty beast had landed upon the stick, the wood had dug in deep to the beast's hide as its weight pushed it down upon it. The red blood of life had flowed freely upon the huntress below, upon the stick, and upon the ground. It had taken all the young female's strength to merely twist the stick inside and wrench the leveraged weight of the bear to make it fall to the side with a thunderous CRASH!!!

...Then there was silence, cold and empty, until eventually the rain began to patter down and fall from the grayed skies above.

The young female felt her breathing begin to slow, but as it did she pulled up a hand in front of her eyes. It was a right hand, but it was...her hand. The young female's eyes seemed too suddenly glow with a spark, a spark of curiosity and recognition that hadn't been there before. She began to slowly look over her hand, as if fascinated by the entirely new realization that this was "her" hand, before sitting up in the pool of the bear's blood and looking upon herself. That bare physical form, primal as any animal, yet suddenly all the more fascinating. The huntress began to touch her other arm, her legs, her chest, and other parts of her body as the sensation of touch and "self" crept ever inwards with a newfound sense of recognition.

She could feel the touch of the rain too, the water that came from the sky, and could see as it washed off some of the animal blood that had clung to her skin. She slowly began to stand once more, before slowly looking to the sharp branch still stuck inside of the bear. After a moment of contemplation, she pulled out the stick and held it in her hands once more. Some organ of the bear was stuck to the end in pieces, and it was covered in blood...the huntress took a wary bite of the severed flesh after a moment. Her eyes then widened, as further realization about this stick and what she had done finally clicked into her mind in turn.

The world seemed to open up before the young female's eyes more and more, more than it ever had been for her species since their evolution. She was herself. The rain was...cold, but wet. The blood of this bear was wet...yet warm. Its fur was soft, the stick's end was pointy...there was so much she hadn't yet grasped that was to be seen. To be felt.

A goofy grin came to the female Crowe's face, as she hefted the bloody branch towards the grayed skies, a clap of thunder striking not a moment after as she let out a resounding and triumphal "ROAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAA" into the heavens.

She could roar to the heavens like the bear had roared, and like the sky had always roared above them. She could overcome the bear, with its size and larger claws than those on her soft-skinned hands. Who was to say the sky was not next? Who was to say this bear's lifeless husk could not be of more use than mere "food" either?

The huntress would soon began to drag back the bear and the stag she had slain.

She would bring to her people what she had learned, and what she had realized. Their eyes soon too would begin to open with the glimmer of wisdom as the felt the stick, touched the blood, felt the rain on their skin for the first time, and listened to the victorious cry of the huntress. Indeed, life for the Crowe would never be the same again.

Long had they feared the bear, but no longer would she fear it. Once they had feared the roar of the skies themselves...but no longer would they have to fear the roar of the skies! Perhaps the sky roared for them as it had once done for the bear, and rang its thunderous call over their victory over the bear! Their strength would prove mightier than even the largest beasts of their very lush and temperate home, which sat at a high altitude up close to the heavens!

In the many days following, the slain bear would itself too prove the beginnings for much more for the Crowe to discover.

From its soft and warm fur, sections would be experimentally torn off and kept close. Its largest bones were used to smash smaller prey over the head. Its blood left a strange print on the wall of the rocky overhang the group was living under.

Other gathered sticks had sparked when rubbed together by accident, producing a painful heat....one they had begun to see the use of. Fire. The glowing, beating heart of the world they looked upon with a naive fascination. Meat close to fire seemed to also taste better, and fire made the larger beasts keep away and hurt them.

More branches too, sharpened using claws and rocks on the broken end, seemed to make more mighty Basic Tools with which to pierce the hide of the formerly mighty bear from up close or afar. The skull of the mighty beast, when dipped in the flowing river nearby, would too hold the liquid within it...an unexpected but amazing sight. It could hold more so when the holes in it were filled with leaves or dirt.

So much to see, so much to devour, so much to feel...for the Crowe, like others in their world, it was like everything had been born anew...much like how the rain had washed the huntress anew after her hunt.

Hidden 1 mo ago Post by Odin
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Odin Death is the only God that comes when you call

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Day 15, Week 3, Cycle 1: Heidevolk
Springtime, 19 C°, Sunny but clouded


The Volk had spent their next two weeks repeating the steps of their early days, procuring slightly more food every day the better in tune they became with the world around them. Similarly, the shelters they had built had collapsed relatively soon, and they were forced to rebuild them using stronger materials. The new huts looked surprisingly cosy from the outside, but offered little room. Of course, this is no problem, since all the Volk had to use the space for at the moment were themselves and their small supply of tools they had managed to procure over the two weeks of experimentation. They now had access to rudimentary axes, which were made by using a stone to put a hole through a large hefty stick, and then inserting the stone into it and tying it in with spun plant fibre. The adze was a similar implement, used to dig instead of chop, and it followed a similar creation process. Along with these primitive tools, they had found that wildly swinging a makeshift club at the water was not a particularly effective way of gathering fish. Instead, they opted to create fishing spears - short spears with a pronged end. It took some getting used to, as the water caused the fish to appear 'higher' than they were, but once they had the hang of it, they could fish effectively.

However, in the end they could only pre-occupy themselves with tinkering with tools for so long. Lacking any good material to work with, such as metals, or better tools to create better tools with, they were forced to maintain such an existence for now. It did not take long for two younger Volk to begin walking away from the camp to explore their surroundings further. They had already ventured into the forest while gathering supplies for their shelters, as they were familiar with it, but this did not really provide them any new insights. It was simply the same place it had been before, although upon spotting a nearby deer running away when it heard them, it did give them a new idea on what food to procure. Perhaps the once complacent omnivores that primarily ate berries and fish would expand their culinary efforts soon enough, but now was not the time.

The two young Volk instead headed due north, towards the ocean that was visible from the hill where their giant oak tree stood, to see what that giant blue thing was. Of course, it was water, but they had not quite managed to figure that out yet. Primitive beings remained primitive, for now. As future Heidevolk said, 'a savage may carry a tool, but it is still a savage,' and indeed so it was true for these primitives.

As they made their way through the sparse forest ahead, which was a continuation of the larger forest due north-northeast to the east and south-east of their 'main camp,' they found their way upon a small spring that came to be from a small hill, seemingly drawing water from underground before sending it back towards the ocean, perhaps through the design of some natural pump that pushed the water up out of the small spring in the hill. Enthralled with this phenomenon, the Volk spent a good hour there trying to see where the water was coming from. “Hu-hu,” one of them said, and the other nodded. Together they took a drink of the spring before following it down towards the ocean, moving down the hill the water flowed on towards a bed of sand that seemed to stretch left and right and go on forever. Or, well, rather it followed the bend of the bay they were in, and then disappeared around the bend of the land. But, to the Volk and their simple minds, that might as well have equated 'forever.' Once they reached the water, they found themselves amazed by the sheer quantity of the water. If they moved and lived at the beach, they would have water forever!

Simply amazed with this discovery, they quickly proceeded to take another drink, only to spit out the water and use their fingers to try and wipe their tongues clean. “Huu!” one of them screeched before the other joined him, “HUUUU!” One of them curled their hands into fists and began beating the water, angered by it's bad salty taste. Little did they know that salt, perhaps in smaller quantities, would be their first step towards preservation of food in the future. Instead, it became their enemy for now. Together they began beating up the water, splashing it around until they were so tired they almost could no longer stand, and let themselves fall down into the water on their back, floating around a moment. Wait, they floated? Surprised with this realization, they once again stood up and looked eachother in the eyes. “HUMHUUUU!”

Once again the flailing around began, but this time more in enjoyment than anger. Although it wasn't quite 'swimming' yet, they at least understood that they would not drown immediately, and in fact, that water could be pleasant to be in. Perhaps not quite a surprising fact for other races, but for the Volk, who had never really been 'in' water as much as ankle-height, this was a new found fact.

The two youngsters spent the entire day there, splashing around in the water and occasionally resting on the beach, while the rest of their families slaved away at home working on the 'settlement,' if we could call it that. The houses could be pulled up and down within a matter of hours, so in that sense there was no sense of permanence yet, although their lack of knowledge on the surrounding environment meant that they would stay put in the area for now, at least until they had explored some more.

When they returned, they shared their findings with the rest of the Volk around the campfire, while sharing a larger portion of fish and berries this time. “Huuuhh... hua,” one of the youngsters said, raising his hands to the sides of his head to mimic a stag, which the others understood. Then he continued, “Wuuush.. wuuush..” mimicking the sound of the ocean water pushing up against the beach over and over. His hand moved up and down, showing them the waves, and they all gasped and talked among themselves, discussing the concept of beach and ocean. The merriment was rudely interrupted when the sudden sound of a trumpet was heard in the distance, coming from the west, an unexplored region. A large creature walking on four legs and with a long arm for a nose appeared suddenly, the trumpeting noise coming from its nose echoing through the valley once again. Behind it was a large creature, also on four legs, but significantly smaller than the armnose creature. This creature appeared to be hunting the large armnose, and with a large jump pounced its way onto the back of the armnose. Like this the two creatures disappeared into the distance again, hidden by the darkness of the coming night and behind the various trees masking that position.

But the sudden realization that they were not the only dangerous creatures in the area dawned on them.

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Hidden 1 mo ago 1 mo ago Post by Tal
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A gentle breeze danced on the snout of a snorting wave, which crashed and swallowed itself into the sand. The breeze blew on the wet sand, rolled, and burst with greatened speed across the dry sands and off the beach right into thick undergrowth. The forest was uncomfortably humid and immediately stifled the breeze, and it stumbled and died on a thick tree trunk. But though the wind had died, the forest was very much alive. Mosses, liverworts, and lichens were immediately visible when one looked beyond the ferns, and the chirping of birds was constant and incessant. No sooner had one bird grown silent before another leapt in, carrying the unending birdsong to new heights of ecstatic beauty. It was a celebration of their unsoiled, pristine paradise.

There were mammals here too, from raccoons to black bears and cougars to the mighty elk. Innumerable rivers and streams flowed from freshwater lakes, frogs and toads and fish aplenty and all manner of river fauna in and around them. Hills rose and fell, but there were no mountains (strange as this was for a great island in the middle of the sea). And yet for all this great diversity of life, there was no intelligent life at all to be found on the isle.

And suddenly, as though some almighty god had at that very moment been thinking the same thing, a small feighd popped into existence. It was followed by another, then another, and another, until there were hundreds looking around themselves in wonder and confusion. That wonder and confusion disappeared, however, when each one of those feighd realized that they were hungry and their eyes narrowed and saw each other. One in the shape of an adorable girl with slightly pointed ears, patted a little winged boy. They looked at each other for a few short seconds, the boy opened his mouth ever so slightly, and then suddenly the girl's mouth erupted open and she consumed his head whole. Her quarry erupted into dust and she sucked up the magical dust.

As though a spell had been broken, the feighd fell upon one another in a feasting frenzy and magical dust filled the island's forest air. When all was said and done, there was only one left. She had eaten all of her siblings and was now no longer a little girl with pointed ears, but tall and slender and beautiful at a full seven inches in height. Her wings fluttered here and there and she cocked her head as she looked around herself. And she thought it a great shame that everyone was gone.

pop

A small confused feighd popped into view before her.

pop pop pop pop

Another four, and then a series of pops followed so that there were eleven others, and she was the twelfth. They were about to fall on one another, but a command came from her and they all paused and looked at her. There was respect and fear in their eyes. They knew her to be powerful, and they knew her to be the leader. She chirruped and squeaked and piped haughtily, and they all circled around her and squeaked and cheeped in response, displaying their submission before her. She squacked suddenly and raised her hands dramatically, and all the feighd around her launched themselves in various directions.

The feighd queen (though she did not know that term, it was simply what she was, just like a bee queen was simply what she was) sat down on a leaf and huffed, fanning herself with a hand against the heat. But it was woefully ineffective. She looked around and noticed that these leaves were shaped rather like hands, only much bigger. Surely they would be more effective at fanning! When one of her subjects returned she cheeped and and squeaked at him, pointing at a leaf with a long stem. He looked confused for a few moments, but then the bigger feighd squeaked angrily and gestured at it, and he quickly rushed to the leaf and struggled with it until it came loose, and returned back to his mistress.

She fanned herself with her hand and puffed, and he swiftly understood she was hot and excitedly set about fanning her with the leaf. She squealed in approval and drank in the cooler air. She had not been basking in it for more than a minute before three others returned, squealing and screaming in horror and carrying between them some red hot branches. They threw it before the queen and quickly rushed into the air and blew at their hands. The surprised queen had at first backed away from the strange red hot thing, but when it stayed where it was she approached. She sniffed at it, and her eyes lit up when she sensed... magic.

The queen smiled sweetly and chirrupted approvingly to the three who had brought the fire. She gestured for them to go, and then pointed at the fire. They were to bring more. Much more. She looked at the flame with a smile, and then her teeth appeared, and they were viciously curved. She opened her mouth and drank up the flame in one breath. The feighd fanning her gasped and chirruped excitedly. She burped nonchalantly, and gestured for him to keep fanning.

Damn it, but she felt hot.


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Hidden 1 mo ago Post by Crusader Lord
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The Crowe


Day 18, Week 3, Generation 1 (post-sapience)



What was merely a rocky overhang had been built around and upon in the following days since the huntress had returned. In fact, much had occurred since then.

Parts of the bear's torn up pelt were worn by members of the group, carried on their backs or wrapping young for warmth as used by males, or being used to bring back supplies from a hunt or protect from the cold by the females during the day. Larger bones from bears were being chipped around the bottom to make holding them easier as clubs or using them in other ways, whether for smashing up prey and predators...or just cracking something open really, or knocking down strange things from the bushes or trees in the area. Sticks of good kinds were being made sharp to throw or stab at prey with too, with the huntress' stick kept back home to look at and admire. One curious male had managed too find some strange thing near a tree as well, black and under the dirt, but...it tasted like the earth itself while not being dirt. It seemed to go well over the fire too when it came to taste, and even better so with the meat near the fire.

Many animals skulls had too been brought back to plug up and carry water with, though after a time the group had begun to experiment using slick river mud to coat the skulls' outside. Seemed to hold more water that way, and if left in the sun the mud dried decently hard and held water even better! The best mud seemed to come when the rains fell, however, and such times were special to them. They would dance about when the rains came, the blood of the hunt removed from them as they held aloft their skull bowls to the heavens and drank from them. They too all roared along with the crackling thunder in the sky, and cheered when the lightning had given them more fire after striking a nearby tree during one storm. In all of this, the same young huntress from before led them by the matriarch's allowance.

After all, they too would one day be mighty like the roar of the sky, and like the great lights that struck down from the heavens above. They would be cleansed by the water from the sky, made anew in its wetness and drinking the water to take in its strength!

The blood of animals they too had begun to toy with, and many handprints littered the covered wall of the rocky outcropping they lived under. The matriarch had even attempted to make out the image of a bear, merely using the blood from its now non-existent and fully-picked-through corpse. It had been a wondrous, and fascinating thing that the many members of the group had started at for a long time once it was done. Other had then tried to do the same in turn, albeit with very...very....very mixed results.

When cold winds had blown in during their resting, eventually the matriarch had come up with an idea of great fascination after seeing several rocks near them on top of each other near the sticky mud of the river. The huntresses had been moved about to grab these rocks, and some of the males fiddled with them until they fit together like the matriarch had seen. Some had then packed mud in the cracks and over them, after the wind still came through the rocks, and the fire inside seemed to make it dry faster there. It all made the wind stop coming in so much, made fire more warm, and made Crowe much less cold too during the night when using pelts for warmth.

So too had the group begin to grow. The matriarch had gotten closer to the young huntress who had brought them the roar of the sky, aand they had spent many hunts and nights together. Eventually, though, the two had mated for many nights. From this, they all knew, new life could one day be born into the world anew! One born to the strong blood of the great huntress and the mighty matriarch. It was a cause of celebration that day when the morning had come, and some of the others had mated between the males and females that day in celebration. Others had gone out to catch more meat for putting near to the fire, some of the males had dug up these earthy things from under the dirt as well as many sticks to feed the glowing fire in their home.

Then a great storm had come, perhaps the sky roaring its approval of their matriarch and the young huntress once more, and they had drunk from the bowls of skull and mud in celebration once more! Off came the old blood of the day's celebratory hunts, and in came the water of the skies and the great light sent by the heavens! What a great day it was to be, what a great occasion. The young huntress had paraded about her blood-caked sharpened stick during this special time, as they had all roared aloud once more, before all had returned to their home as the darkness of night had come upon them again to rest.

Because the next day, their huntresses would begin to scour about the area beyond their hunting grounds for the first real time. They had seen hints that more prey could exist beyond, and that had begun ideas. More prey would mean more pelts, more food, and more skulls to celebrate with as the sky roared. That much, at least, was a basic reason to explore...though they too felt the lingering sense of curiosity, the desire to look beyond and see what lied even farther from their home.

Hidden 1 mo ago 1 mo ago Post by 6slyboy6
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Day 1, Week 5, Cycle 1
Springtime - Beginning of Monsoon Season, 17 C°, Cloudy


A month passed since the first sapient creatures saw the sun rise for the first time in their conscious life. 4 weeks filled with joy and laughter, as well as sweat and blood shed to bring about a manner of life never before seen. 28 days of relentless pursuit for knowledge, a deep yearning to see and feel more of the world around them, to understand it. 672 hours of having a mind of their own, a feeling of self and an understanding of others around them. 40320 minutes of millions of heartbeats that seemed to resonate in the air with every breath taken, with every muscle moved, with every cheerful laughter and every defiant battlecry. All of it seemingly impossible before spring, yet here they are all are, living and breathing beings who defy reason and rewrite the rules that their ancestors have followed for millions of years.

The warrior ants of the northern hills have gained sapience and learned to tame fire and recognize each other in a way they never have before, a different bond beginning to grow itself between the members of the communal species. The frog people of the great western lake have began calling themselves names and establishing a future for the younglings that they expect to arrive with the arrival of the warm summer. The forestfolk of the eastern peninsula have been hard at work trying their very best to protect themselves from the elements with their basic huts, their design more and more sophisticated with each day passing. The artias, once simple people have began learning to harness the world around them, using fish traps to catch food without the need for gruelsome journeys into the forest like they used to do. The aslanta have recognized the importance of order in their playful and nihilistic lifestyle, their joyful hours of playtime on the beach slowly transforming to something more. And the feighd, as if willed into existence by the universe itself without any prior warning and carrying with them a force yet unknown, have begun their long journey down the path of finding a palce for themselves in this world they have only graced with their presence for so long...

The two forestfolk youngsters who wandered to the ocean have seen for the first time many wildlife that dwell on the beaches, including giant turtles and many types of birds. Thought not uncommon sight for them, they have traversed down the length of a smaller river and ventured through forests more dense than anywhere else near where they live, all the while moving down the hills and losing sight of the ocean over the treetops. Their voyage was short, but they have already managed to discover a wide variety or flora and fauna that do not thrive on the grasslands and light forests they call home.

The young crowe huntress has made several journey up and down the mountains in an attempt to find new hunting grounds. On her trip she encountered the foot of the largest mountain in sight of their little group, and for the first time ever wandered into more dry climates, where the trees were more sparse and the undergrowth was much shorter as well. Yet the forest never seemed to end, save for the many cliff faces and hilltops that dot the mountaneous region of her group's vicinity. On her trip to the north, she encountered many sources of fresh spring water that seemed to flow abundant from the rocks before pooling into small lakes that disappeared down the mountain in the forms of fast flowing and crystal clear streams.




On the dawn of the first day of the 5th week, the wind carried the smell of salt deep inland, up the highest peaks of the continent and down into it's deepest valleys. The birds of the forest were awfully quiet, and the game of the forest seemed more reluctant to leave their nests and homes in search for food. It was the unmistakable smell of the great storms coming from the south, the winds carrying their scent hundreds of miles ahead of the clouds themselves as a stark warning to all that they were on the way. A reminder that they did not forget their old promise to return, and a silent vow that they will visit till the end of times.

The unruly waves washed floatwood and palm leaves onto the southern beaches of the Continent, along with plenty of fish that was unfortunate enough to be swimming near the beach. The caves echoed with the sound of the ocean and cliffs roared as the unmovable cliff faces clashed with the unstoppable and raging waves. By the afternoon, the clouds have begun marching across the sky over both islands, with light rain showering the forests and grasslands that made up most of the land, and brought life to the dry deserts of the mountains as their flowers boomed with vibrant colors.

But all who dwelled on the islands, even the animals deep in the forest and caves, knew very well that this lighthearted trickery of the wind and the sky would not last for long. Deep down inside the brain of even the smallest insect, the gears began to turn and survival instincts switched gears. It would not take more than several days before the sky would turn grey and spew lighning and thunder forth, bringing with itself tides meters high and incessant rain that would blur out the son for weeks, or days if they were lucky.

It was the calm before the storm, and the animals of the forest and the hills knew this very well, covering deep within their nests or scurrying around frantically looking for supplies that they could use to weather the storm.




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They had not been able to make the firefruit, and she was angry. One of them, who everyone thought looked very much like a red flower and so had braided a number of these flowers into his red hair, looked behind them at where she was regally on a great yellow flower with two others fluttering to either side of her while fanning furiously. She squacked, Redflower winced, and a piece of plant matter thwacked him on the head. He yelped and a sudden spark shot out of his head and onto the dry twigs and leaves before him. The other two who were trying to make the firefruit gasped in shock and began to screech and scream, and one of them pulled at Redflowers hair, ruining his beautiful headdress, in an attempt to work out how he had made that spark.

The Queen, for her part, had not seen the spark, but she had sensed a sudden upsurge and was staring at Redflower like he had eaten a whole firefruit without showing her. She rose, tall and beautiful and utterly resplendent, her once-naked form now covered in a leafy dress her loyal subjects had made and gifted her, and she spread her great multi-colored wings and seemed to float serenely towards Redflower. She paused above him and stared at him gravely, and he looked sheepish and sorry for having disappointed her. But then her grave stare softened and she bent down and patted him gently on the head, her eyes bleeding with forgiveness and understanding, and her serene smile causing Redflower euphoric joy. He chirruped with determination, a promise to find out how that spark had come out of his head. Her eyes hardened and her smile froze, and her lips parted to reveal wickedly sharp teeth. Redflower trembled. He knew what would come of him if he failed.

She rose and looked at the others disdainfully, then squacked briskly and clapped her hands. They all rushed around each other and got to thwacking one another in attempts to replicate what had happened with Redflower. The Queen, satisfied with their instant obedience, returned to her flowery throne and watched them. As she did so, it began to rain, and everyone paused and looked up at the thick canopy far above. Little rain would reach them as the canopy drank it all up and drained it down, but the sound - first gentle, then persistent, then incessant, then thunderous - caused them all to pause. The Queen rose and took a few graceful strides upward. She looked at the others, who were staring at her adoringly. She gestured for Redflower and a blue-haired feighd, called Bluebell because she looked like bluebells, to follow her to inspect the rain. Then she snapped at the others to continue in their attempts to generate sparks and create the firefruit once more.

The Queen, Redflower, and Bluebell rose swiftly upwards and made their way through the canopy until nothing stood between them and the heavens. But the heavens were obscured by thick black clouds that roiled and grew angrily, spitting raindrops the size of a feighd and bigger. One smacked Bluebell directly and sent her reeling downwards, and the Queen and Redflower quickly retreated beneath the canopy after seeing this. Unsatisfied with this turn of events, the Queen stared upwards at the canopy and slowly a gleam lit up her eyes. She gestured for Redflower and Bluebell to gather up the two biggest leaves from the trees that they could find. The two dashed off, and eventually came back with two great leaves, and all three of them ascended once more. This time they all took refuge beneath the two leaves as the Queen surveyed the mighty rain. The rain drops smashed against the leaves, and though they bent slightly they held.

Lightning flashed across the skies and the clouds rumbled and then exploded with thunder. The Queen was quiet through this, though Redflower and Bluebell trembled at the sight of lightning and sound of thunder. Then lightning flashed again, closer now, and thunder rumbled. The two little ones shook and trembled, but their Queen had eyes only for the powerful light that lit up the heavens before thunder came. She gestured for the two to follow her, and they dashed across the canopy. The two subjects did not know where their queen was leading them, but she seemed to be heading somewhere with purpose.

When at last she stopped, they found themselves floating above a strange tree. There were black clouds emerging from it. The Queen dashed down swiftly and her two subjects dashed after her, and they now could see that the tree had somehow cracked right down the middle. Far below they found embers, but no firefruit. The Queen gathered up some of the embers with twigs and settled them down. She added dry leaves and watched as the embers ate at them and grew, and then she added twigs until the firefruit was tremendous and large. Redflower and Bluebull chirruped and cheered, but their Queen silenced them with a glance and she picked up a very large twig and dipped its tip into the firefruit, whereupon the twig caught fire. Her subjects did likewise and they dashed off to find the others.

That night, while rain smashed the rainforest's canopy and lightning lit the night and thunder growled and clapped, the feighd danced around their glorious Queen and around the great firefruit she had brought them. They chirruped and sang more beautifully than any bird, and one feighd with brown tree-like skin brought a hollow twig to his lips and blew in it to make a strange but oddly nice sound. The feighd danced and sang, and many others grabbed just such twigs and blew into them to make the celebratory victorious hooting sound. They would never let the firefruit go out again, and they would feed from its delicious magic forever!


Hidden 1 mo ago 1 mo ago Post by Odin
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Odin Death is the only God that comes when you call

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Day 1, Week 5, Cycle 1: Heidevolk Expansion
Springtime - Beginning of Monsoon Season, 17 C°, Cloudy


A sudden clap of thunder woke most of the Volk early in the morrow, causing them to shoot up from their slumber in their little huts. It was raining, and they could hear it through the thin walls made of branches and leaves. Luckily it kept them dry, but the shelters were not quite advanced enough to be able to withstand the winds and rainstorms that would come soon. Slowly, one by one, the Volk came out of their huts, some of them in pairs as they had joined together for the night for more entertaining things than sleep as apparently not all instincts had disappeared, and collectively they stared at the sky. In the north it was still relatively clear, in the south the skies became gradually darker. The rain did not seem to bother them now, more so than the prospect of the incoming season. They had never been 'aware' of the monsoon so much as they had just gone through it. They had never prepared for it either, and mostly just found shelter whenever the weather turned. But now that they were acutely aware of their position and the danger that the incoming weather changes posed to them, they realized that they could not stay here and do nothing like they had done for years before.

Some of the Volk went back into their huts, perhaps to catch some more sleep or to continue their activities with their partners, while others began moving around and getting ready for the day. One Volk in particular, the strong, muscular Volk that had made a rather powerful, if unintelligible speech the night they received their sapience, did not agree with this, and he screamed out loud, “HRRAAAAAA! HUUUUU!!” while raising his fists to the sky, catching the attention of the Volk again. Several came out of their huts again to see what allthe commotion was about. “Hugha, hugha!” the Strongvolk proclaimed, beckoning for everyone to come closer. He was attempting to secure a position of authority, very clearly, but none of the others objected, yet, until they had heard what he wanted from them.

“Hu, hu,” he said, pointing at the two young Volk that had explored the beach earlier, “go! Hu hu! Go! Hunga hu!” while beckoning towards the sea again, and roughly ordering them to scavenge for items. He then pointed to himself, and then gestured towards the oceans direction, before continuing, “EGEIN! MIE GO HUUH!” Clearly, 'Egein' was referring to what he thought to be his name, and he was telling the rest that he would come with them to see what they were doing. The two younger Volk nodded, seemingly agreeing, but one of the older more mature Volk stepped up and disagreed, violently shaking his head.

“HA!” he screamed, walking closer to the Strongvolk that was named Egein, and once again yelled out, “MIE GO!” It seemed he was indicating that he should go with the two young Volk, and in turn this meant he was challenging the Strongvolks' recently established authority. Without much warning, the Strongvolk cocked his fist back and sent it forwards, straight into the challengers' jaw, sending him down to the ground. Without even offering the Volk so much as a chance, the Strongvolk climbed on top of him to prevent him from getting back up, and reached to the side, grabbing a nice, large round rock, and began smashing it into the challengers' head, over and over. The rest of the Volk simply looked on. They didn't really understand violence between the Volk -- not in this way, at least, as violence was relatively common during the mating season back when they were still animals -- and didn't really understand that the Volk on the ground was slowly being killed, every strike with the rock bringing him closer to death.

By the time the Strongvolk had been convinced that he had reasserted his claim to the leadership of the 'tribe,' there was not much left of the face of the Volk on the ground. Slowly, Egein got up and dropped the bloodied rock, looking around the tribe. “GO HU!” he said, gesturing at one of the other Volk, indicating that he had changed his mind and didn't want to go to the ocean after all. It seemed like a strange thing to do after attacking someone because they wanted to go to the ocean instead, but perhaps the crux of the issue had not been about the ocean at all. Egein gestured towards himself again, and now gestured towards the direction of the forest. “Mie go! Hu hu!” It seemed that he wanted to hunt now, and he pointed at three different Volk, beckoning them to come with him. He selected three males, as they were the more muscular of the bunch, and perhaps Egein thought they would be more suitable for whatever hunting strategy he had in mind.

The two young Volk and the hand-selected 'guardian' started moving towards the ocean, once again following the path of the river, since it was the only way down to the bay without having to climb down arduous cliffsides of dark rock.

The remaining four Volk would stand around the body of the dead Volk in the center, waiting for him to get back up. He did not. Slowly, one of them bent down to touch him, and when she touched him, the body was already cold, much colder than usual. Slowly she shook him, but there came no response, his eyes staring lifelessly into the grey sky, rain pouring down onto him. “Hmmmmmm... huuuuuu!” she cried out into the sky, and the other Volk joined her in this mourning call. As if the gods had heard her, a flash of white light followed by the clap of thunder followed, perhaps indicating that the Volk had crossed over to 'the other side,' or perhaps a signal that the Gods had heard their mourning cry and mourned with them. The concept of 'murder' had been invented, and the historians of the future would know it was the Heidevolk that killed their own kind first. Well, unless you counted the cannibal fae that ate their own kind out of instinct..

The 'burial' was primitive. They carried the body not too far away from the camp, to a more swampy bog area of the area. There, they unceremoniously pushed the body into the bog, which bubbled as it received the body. Unbeknownst to them, when the body sank to the bottom of the bog and became a part of the bog, it would most likely be decently preserved. Together, the four Volk walked back to the camp, and began shoring up their defenses against the weather, reinforcing their huts with more branches that were pushed into the soil, to keep them from moving too much.







The plan for the hunt had been orchestrated by Egein, who had used a stick to draw in the dirt once they'd reached the forest. The illustration was meant to illustrate the strategy of scaring a deer into running towards a Volk that would be hiding behind a rock with a sharpened stake, ready to punch a hole straight through the creature. Obviously, the one that would deliver the killing blow was Egein, the Strongvolk, since he was the leader and the leader deserved to do the honours.



Once it was all said and done, it would take several hours for the three Volk to even find a deer before they could even begin to lure it towards Egein. The Volk were not originally carnivores and thus had never 'hunted' in the same vein that a predator might have, so most of the finer touches of hunting were lost on them for now while they got their bearings on this new concept. Once they found the deer, everything went very quickly. The three of them chased the deer around, screaming and flailing with their sharpened sticks, constantly trying to get it to move towards where they thought Egein was, drawing it closer and closer.

Once it finally reached Egein, he jumped out and with a satisfying yell pushed the sharpened stake into the creatures flank, and using his superior strength, pushed the animal over into the ground using the leverage of the spear. He pulled the spear out again, and then pushed it back into the animal, this time striking it in the heart, ending the creatures life. “HAHAHAHA!” Egein bellowed, satisfied with his kill, and the three other Volk seemed happy too, smiling at eachother for their ability to complete this chore.

Egein sent the three other Volk back to tell the ones that remained to prepare the fire, as they would eat good tonight. Alone, he took his flint stone and began using it to cut up parts of the animal. Since leatherwork was not yet known to him, he simply cut up the skin wherever he felt the need to, ruining much of the hide. Unbeknownst to him, in the shadow of a nearby rocky outcropping, a sinister creature lurked, watching Egein as he worked the animal. Slowly, the animal approached, coming closer and closer, until it accidentally stepped upon a branch.

The hunter quickly turned around and reached for his stake, but it was too far away, and so it came to be he was now eye-to-eye with a dangerous predator. Though the Volk would have hated to admit it, he was shaking in his... lack of boots. Armed with nothing but a piece of flint in one hand and a piece of meat in the other, the Volk stared the animal down, trying to intimidate it into leaving. Slowly the Volk stood up, rising to his feet and standing ready to defend himself and his kill. “HSssssss..” he hissed, trying to scare the animal into leaving. Unfortunately, the beast was rather stubborn, and simply stood there observing the creature that he most likely thought was interesting, but stupid.



Suddenly Egein jumped forward, waving his flint around wildly, once again trying to scare the animal, but the distance was too great and the wolf simply stepped back slightly, before showing its teeth and growling. “Hu! Hu!” Egein proclaimed, and he threw the piece of meat towards the wolf in fear. Many Volk had been victim to the great wolf during their period as animals, and even now, with sapience, the Volk would fear the creature.

The wolf simply took its offering into its mouth and, after observing Egein for a while longer, slowly stepped back towards the rocky outcropping, where it laid down and observed Egein. Too scared to continue working with his back turned towards the animal, Egein stepped towards the other side of the wolf, and slowly began cutting up the animal. When the wolf finished its meal, Egein would simply throw another small piece of meat to bribe the animal into, well, not killing him.

It seemed to work. Sort of.





At the ocean, the Volk had just wandered down the small hillside that lead down to the bay, and began scavenging the mossy and sandy beach. They were looking for anything of value to them, from seashells to fish to turtles. And when they finally found a turtle, all they had to do was run up to it, grab it and turn it on its back so that they could grab it when they were ready to go home. After a while, there were probably close to five turtles that had been turned on their back, of varying sizes. It was a rather hilarious sight if you ignored the fact that the animals would most likely be dead by the time the night fell.

The other items they found were mostly decorative, ranging from sea shells to colorful round pebbles, rounded by the ocean water, to clams and small fish that had washed ashore. None of it was particularly valuable, save perhaps the turtles, but it all served a purpose, especially the sea shells and colorful stones. Once they had gathered all of it up, they began hauling it back, with one of the Volk stacking three overturned turtles on top of each other to carry them all at once. Yes, tonight would be a feast.

Or would it be?

Once they came back to the camp, they put three of the turtles into the small pond in their camp, and began feeding it some of the smaller dead fish they'd found. Perhaps it was an entertaining way to keep the turtles for later. Or perhaps they had thought them to be 'pets,' in as far as turtles could be pet. No real 'training' of the animals was required, so to speak, so we could not reasonably speak of animal husbandry. The animals were still as wild as they had been before, and the purpose for which the Volk had taken them was unclear, since turtles were not particularly fast breeders, so using them for a prolonged source of meat was, well, idiotic. Perhaps they were just decoration, as the Volk began putting the sea shells and clams down in the pond, 'recreating' the environment that the turtles lived in. A primitive, and stupid, zoo, perhaps?

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Hidden 1 mo ago 1 mo ago Post by Crusader Lord
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Crusader Lord A professional, anxiety-riddled, part-time worker

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The Crowe


Day 2, Week 5, Cycle 1



The animals could feel it, sense it even....and so could they. The days of great thunder were coming, when the skies would darken the sun for so many suns it might seem eternal. The waters would pour down like great tears to wash the land, the great light of the heavens would strike down, and the roar of the skies would echo through the trees and rocks with a mighty fury. It was a time that boded both great celebration, and great though...but also great worry and preparation. The animals would hide in their homes, the plants would be drowned out in the noise, and the winds would crash on with a mighty howling and wailing and gnashing of teeth.

The matriarch had been most worried, and the young huntress (her close mate) had noticed more than a little bit. Orders had been barked out to the other huntresses to secure more prey, and to the males to secure more of those earthy things that grew near the roots of trees and other edible things. Many larger rocks would be brought back as well, in the days to come, to make stronger their home...and to build more. They could not fit so much in their home, and so they had eventually all come to the same idea of making another place of rocks to keep their things and those who would keep it safe.

More sticks were to be grabbed while it was dry as well, as they had learned the hard way that the wet made it harder for sticks to become fire. These too would be kept in places made of great and heavy rocks. The huntresses would all bring the supplies in, and the males would assemble them as they had helped do so before. More skulls would be fashioned with mud by the fire too.

However....this had led to a general sense of tension among the group. Among all of them. It had begun to emerge like wind through the cracks in the rocks, before mud had been added. And soon it would come to strike, much like the great light of the skies...

"GADA!!!" one of the other huntress roared, lashing up at the young huntress with a twisted black and red claw, nearly hitting the young huntress' left eye as she stumbled backwards and was cut by three of the claws.

The young huntress, and one of her hunting companions, had gotten into an argument. Little prey still wandered the woods freely, and they had been forced to break into smaller groups so they could walk out longer and farther to find more in the new places as well. Eventually, the young huntress and the three others with her only managed to get several small rabbits...a most disappointing hunt thus far. One had then begun to argue against her, and she had argued in return, until it came to this. Anger unrestrained, and they all knew what that meant for them. Combat with their own, a twisted visage...a monster. The other two only stood back and watched as the battle had begun, mostly out of sheer surprise than anything else.

"RAAAA!" the young huntress roared back, striking down with her spear towards the other huntress, who rolled to the side and struck up again at her as she rose from the ground. This time the claws of this twisted older huntress grazed the young huntress' right side, if only just as the young huntress dove to the side.

It was a war of bodies, with the older huntress being larger and more experienced...but right now was herself twisted with rage. The young huntress, however, was smaller, and more agile whilst she right now stood on her feet. The young huntress had too at least somewhat begun to grow larger over the many days, but had far from yet to fully mature. Yet as the two females bitterly roared and fought, trees creaking and fallen branches cracking, in the end the outcome was much like the storms...mighty, terrible, and unpredictable. At least, until it came to its final, sudden, and climactic conclusion.

The young huntress eventually, with some effort, drove her spear into the neck of the warped older huntress, having harmed her there many, many times with this sharp stick to try to create a wound. Many, many chippings had been made at that toughened hide, and many blows had been traded. Yet in this final strike, the young huntress had finally pierced through. In a moment, the older huntress' faceless visage seemed to pause, before the body collapsed to the ground as the young huntress drove the spear forward with a push. The twisted visage of the older huntress seemed to dissipate, now revealing the blood-gushing and spear-pierced throat of the now normal-again older huntress.

The older female's eyes went wide, looking up with pure horror and shock into those of the determined young huntress. For a moment there was struggling by the older female's hands to try to remove the stick and fight back, but much like the pierced bear the older huntress' eyes went from a state of horror and shock....and eventually became glazed over as her body went lifelessly limp. It was not hard to tell among the remaining three huntresses of the group what had happened. The older huntress was...dead. Dead like the prey they slew, when the life left its vivid eyes.

It took the young huntress some moments to collect herself...chest heaving with labored breath...but eventually she hefted her bloodied spear above her head and roared aloud in triumph once more as a crack of distant thunder echoed solemnly from a good ways away. Yet this time, the call of triumph came with a sorrowful tone to it. Two distinct cuts were on her body, three that stretched above and below her still-ok left eye, and three on her side. She had survived where her elder had failed to slay her, and yet the thrill of victory seemed to feel mixed with a sort of sadness. To see a group member come to this, to seek to slay her out of anger, to see their group's numbers harmed as they had sought to make ready to survive...it did not feel right. Even the onlookers, as they faced twisted with a grim acceptance, felt the same about the matter.

"...G-a-h." the young huntress eventually said, mouthing out a different sound like many the group had begun toying with as of late, and then gesturing silently to the two onlookers to grab the body of their dead sister to bring back to camp.

The two other huntresses paused for a moment...and then moved to do as they had been told. With one less huntress, the coming hunts would be harder to manage. The young huntress then looked to the sharpened stick that had once been the older huntress', butt of it stuck into the ground with a leaf speared on top of it. As her sorrows floated about within, however...so to did a new idea come about. If they could but get prey to come to the stick, then they could better catch food with less huntresses. In fact, that was perhaps an idea. She and the others has seen over the years what foods the prey would eat.

-------


Once the body had been laid back at camp, the story of what happened was conveyed by using animal blood on the cave wall to draw it out, and the matriarch had eventually calmed down from worry upon seeing the young huntress with injuries, it was time for them all to get back to work. That was all they could do, really...the mourning would come later, when the next storm came. They would place the deceased sister's body at the top of the tallest tree, and allow the great light of the heavens to strike it and the tree into nothingness...and allow the rains to wash away and cleanse the body of its anger and suffering. Much as the storm had roared with them in triumph, it too would roar with them in sorrow.

But for the young huntress, her new idea would soon be put to the test as well to finish off this day.

Bones would be used to make large and deep holes in the ground within the lush temperate rainforest land, placed where many animal tracks were...and where they had seen food the animals liked that had tracks near or around it. The digging was done similar to how the male had once dug up the earthy tasting thing by a tree out of curiosity one day, but now for a new purpose. Many strong but smaller sharpened sticks would be placed within the bottom of these holes, far below the open top of the hole, and the bottom lined with smaller rocks tightly fitted together. The open tops of them were then covered in branches and leaves and some food for the prey in the middle of them. The young huntress led them in this, making it up as she had gone along...and other huntresses providing their own insight as they had looked for locations and ideas to make this work.

They would then come back, to help bring more rocks, to dig up spots to make it easier to start stacking the rocks, to find more earthy things with the males if they had time, and to use mud and skulls to make more vessels with which to hold water and such things. The young huntress and the matriarch would direct them in these things. The male that had most often mated with the old and now dead huntress as of later would, however, be found lying on his side in the cave...still, and dripping water from his eyes...

...he was then left alone for the day, at the matriarch's behest.

In other coming days before the storms came, these places and more beyond would be scouted out by the remaining huntresses. Both to see if their rudimentary traps would provide more food, and to see what else might lie beyond before the storms came.

***NOTE: The Crowe are trying to do a lot in the 7 day time period allotted. Operative word: "trying". So if it sounds like a lot, well, doesn't it always sound and feel like a lot when rushing to prepared for a bad weather event? We can only get done what we can, how we can, and to the best of our ability.

Likewise, I am merely trying to note where their actions are directed, what effects or developmental impacts could be had by this potentially whilst generally moving forward in the RP, and/or what other developments could/might potentially arise in the hider as well.***


Hidden 1 mo ago Post by Caelum
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Caelum

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Fish, was a lovely treat, for the Artias.

Until it stopped becoming such a lovely treat. Not all things in the tribe were quite so simple, it seemed. The tiresome monotony of spending over a month eating only fish and berries had turned many towards more... Respectful findings. As the days grew longer the grunts became more... Refined. Speech patterns. Basic grunts that were terms for things even the dumbest of them could understand. And with this, came knowledge.

Grunts were shared around the campfire at night, thinking of ways- Possible ideas and places they could go to- Where they could find more delicious meals. Some suggested the idea of hunting animals using their sharp sticks. Others, believed it'd be better to start trying to make something out of the world around them- They saw and knew that things grew over time, perhaps with knowledge they could make things come out of the ground too!

And others? Others believed foraging on a wider scale was the answer. All good suggestions, really, that lead up to one, undying problem- Disagreement. So, in a simple matter- The group decided it would be best to have a temporary 'split', where four members would each go in one separate direction, to better adapt and understand the land, instead of all exist in one area and argue among each other. Adapt. Survive. Thrive. They all agreed to meet back in one month around the stones they had erected, to discuss what they had learned.

The tribe of Artias, separated. Each went out in a different direction, promising to return to the stone structure they had lifted at the end of the month to share whatever knowledge they could find. This way, they would still be a community as one- But not get into each others hair and be at each others throats, as well as learn more about the different ways to 'adapt' to the world around them.

So the days passed by, and they went in three directions. For the viewers pleasure, and since they had no way of telling to begin with, we will give these tribes colors. The Red Tribe went north west- Towards the great lake they saw in the distance. The Blue tribe headed into the forest- Towards the ocean to the far north. And the Green Tribe went deeper into the plains, following the river south until they were settled.

All three would eventually form their own separate four man communities. The deal was struck and made- They would each live on their own and at the end of the month return to the meeting stone to share stories and knowledge. And it worked. Despite the fact that storms would soon be upon them, and the weather would grow fierce, the Artias groups had formed a special kind of bond- One that grew beyond what they had set upon as 'families' or 'groups'. United they were, yet each walked a different path of life.

And so began the first great divide of the Artias- A temporary one.

|__________________________________________________________|

The Red Group had decided, upon their trip, that they would have to develop a more firm method of catching food. They could not rely solely on the fruits of the river- They now had to learn how to use their knowledge and adaptability to do something new- Hunt as a group. Dedicated on their path, they used the sticks they had made to collect fish and turned them into spears- Weapons they could use to stab. Combined with fire, these were dangerous tools they could use to kill the local game. It was a rougher existence, but with this they could make an easier time of getting large amounts of meat to eat.

The Blue Tribe found plenty of food amongst the forest- Between small game and fruits and berries, it wasn't hard for them to survive their trip north. But even so, they needed to think of more permanent solutions once they went deeper into the forest. Who knew what they would find deeper- So ingenious solutions came up. By collecting loose wood off the forest floor, they could place it together to create 'temporary shelters' that were more like huts then the previously labor intensive holes in the ground. These could be packed up and dragged on very rudimentary 'sleds', which were nothing more then sticks tied together to form a very rough sled to pull supplies. On the move, they made their way north, to scout the lands beyond the trees.

The Green Tribe continued along the river, and were easily the ones that had the hardest time. Without the ability to stay in one place, and no bushes or forge or fruits- They had to rely on the river in new ways. Creating large 'holders' seemed like a good idea, though it took some time to come up with- Most of which were spent with spear fishing. Eventually, the idea of 'Nets' came to mind- Tying different lengths of rope together to create rudimentary nets that would be used to better collect fish along the river. This way, they could stay on the move, further and further south inland...

|___________________________________________________|


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Hidden 1 mo ago 1 mo ago Post by Tal
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Tal

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But the rain did not stop. Hours passed, thunder roared, lightning shocked the skies, the winds howled and struck at the tree tops, the sea crashed against the shores. And then suddenly the creatures of the forest all emerged - and the feighd had never really noticed them before -, and appeared to be fleeing. Ants and beetles, lizards that eyed the feighd before scrambling swiftly up a tree, ponderously large creatures who were so big that they did not even notice the feighd as they swiftly cleared the area.

For their part, the feighd watched all these creatures fearfully, and even the normally cold and disdainful Queen licked her lips nervously as a great beetle as long as she was tall with three enormous horns walked by their firefruit. When it had passed, the Queen snapped at the tree-skinned feighd, called Treeface, who had come up with the twig pipe. He jumped to attention and rushed to keep watch, and when he saw a creature approaching their location he played his pipe.

But it was not quite loud enough and the Queen squacked at him to do better. Treeface looked at his simple pipe, took a deep breath, and blew as hard as he could into it. A tremendous TOOT! followed that caused everyone to jump and a number of nearby animals to scatter. The Queen for her part clapped and chirruped at Treeface's success. The feighd looked around himself proudly as the other cheered and jumped around him. Then they all gathered up twigs and did to them as Treeface did to his, and whenever any strange creature approached they hefted the pipe and blew with all their strength, warning everyone of the danger while also scaring off the threat.

In his hurry to blow into it when he spotted a large wasp, Redflower dropped his pipe in a puddle, and when he retrieved it he found that it was full of mud and dirt. Nevertheless he blew into it and was surprised when mud and dirt flew right out. His eyes gleamed with realization and he set about searching for little pieces of dirt large enough to just about block the pipe. He place it inside and waited on a creature to pass by. When an unlucky ladybird landed nearby he jumped out and blew the pipe with all his strength. The bit of dirt flew out at great speed and hit the tree trunk just above the ladybird, and a great TOOT! followed. Feeling threatened by the projectile and noise, the ladybird swiftly flew off. Redflower looked at his pipe proudly. He would have to work on his aim, but this thing was great! He dashed off to show the others.

As it were, these creatures were not running away for no reason - though the feighd did not quite realize it. When water began to drench the area near the eternal firefruit the Queen grew alarmed. Then the water began to flow more heavily, and suddenly the water level was rising. The Queen screeched and grabbed a twig from the flame, and a few other nearby feighd (Greentoes and Lilytongue) did likewise before the water-level rose high enough to extinguish the flame completely. They watched from above for a few moments as the water level rose and the flow became stronger, and soon enough Bluebell came squeaking and gesturing wildly that the river had flooded because of all the rain.

Handing the burning twig to Bluebell, the Queen gestured for her and the other two to swiftly go and find a new place on higher ground where they could plant the firefruit once more. Bluebell nodded, sprang out her pipe and blew into it loudly, and dramatically gestured for Greentoes and Lilytongue to follow her forth. Soon enough they had found a high holt and they cleared a great area and lit the firefruit there. Then they gathered big twigs and struck them into the earth all around the grand clearing to make a rounded barricade, and they brought a grand flower and planted it inside the barricaded clearing as a new throne for their Queen. And when the informed the Queen that they had done as she commanded, she summoned all the feighd to her and gathered herself up, and the feighd all lined themselves up before her and behind her and blew their pipes and sang, and they paraded their Queen through the air all the way towards Highholt where the firefruit was, home of the feighdfulc and their magnolious feighdqueen.


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Hidden 1 mo ago Post by Ascendant
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Mordukai



Day 1, Week 5, Cycle 1

The Original Soldier stirred from her sleep deep within the Nest. As usual, it was quiet, pitch black, and comfortably both humid and mildly chilly. Digging underground definitely had its own benefits such as reasonably well regulated temperature, but it also had its downsides as the Soldier had to feel her way out of the caverns in combination with her antennae 'smelling' the trails where other Mordukai had recently passed. Where they often passed, was a greater trail often leading towards the entrance of the Nest.

As it approached the entrance, there was a familiar squishing sound as the Soldier crawled down into the water trap. In her mind flashed the impression of rain, further reinforced as the Soldier emerged to a light drizzle combined with a rare, yearly smell in the air. The Mordukai's astute antennae twitched in the air, collecting the particles and sending a pattern of impulses to her brain that indicated the rainy times had come.

Instinctively, she felt the need to hunker down in the Nest as soon as reasonable, but first, there was business to attend to. Another Soldier emerged from the Nest, flanked by two Workers. The four looked at each other, knowing in their stomachs that a store of food would be necessary.

The Original reached towards the other three with an extended claw, trying to get them to come with her. Being a naturally extremely communal species, it was well understood that a hunting party was being formed. Foraging for food naturally happened with Workers for millennia, whilst the Soldiers had taken to defending the Workers, Nest, and bringing down bigger game. Usually the first Soldier simply led the party.

Things were different this time.

Flanking the Workers, the opposing Soldier also motioned for the others to follow her, almost at the same time as the Original. The two stopped for a moment, unsure of what to do, until they both pointed in opposite directions. The Original wanted to hunt the grasslands, the Opposing, the forests. Both were not terrible ideas, but both could not be simultaneously done without splitting the party.

They then set about for a few minutes motioning in opposite directions, occasionally thumping the dirt with their claws, and trying to convince the Workers whom merely stood there watching and waiting for instructions to come with them. Finally, the Original stomped the ground and slammed her foremost claws into her thorax, antennae shaking with frustration. The Opposing pointed once more around them at the forest and pumped its own chest twice, approaching the Original.

Slowly, the distance between the two closed further and further until there was not a single inch of space between their heads, antennae furiously thwacking the opposing pair, eyes almost touching.

A closed claw struck the Original's thorax, and it was on.

Immediately, four split sets of limbs began to jostle one another, claw interlocking with claw, as the pair of Soldiers engaged in a standing duel. Occasionally, a claw would disengage only to thump the enemy in the chest, but the Mordukai never separated their heads and antennae from the fight. At times the Original found herself beginning to lose balance, but she was bigger and stronger, and therefore more likely to win the jousting match.

'Crack' went the Opposing's thorax chitin as the Original threw most of her strength into a half-piercing punch, knocking her enemy just off balance enough for the Original to grind her feet into the ground and lift the Soldier up into the air. It kept struggling, striking at the Original Soldier as best it could, but without the strong foundation of its legs, the force was greatly reduced.

With a resounding and satisfying 'thud', the Original tossed her enemy into the ground.

The Opposing laid there for a few moments before recollecting herself, crawling away on all sixes, and then slowly returning her feet while clutching the slightly broken chitin on the left side of her thorax. Its head laid low in the direction of the Original, antennae almost horizontal to the ground. She had accepted defeat, at least for now.

As more Workers appeared from the Nest and began fanning out in the rain to start foraging for fruits, vegetables, and berries, another Soldier made its presence known, taking up a post by the entrance to safeguard the all-important Queen. It was common for animals to attempt to make Mordukai Nests homes, especially during rains, but that was not something the ants would stand for in most cases.

Motioning once more towards the grasslands, the Original, her duelist, and two Workers set off.

By the time they arrived an hour later, the rains had increased slightly to that of a sustained shower, though not yet the types of monsoon rains that would likely soon come. The party had made their way to a nearby stream that many animals came to for water, using the rain and tall grass to cover their approach. Whilst the Mordukai couldn't see particularly far due to the precipitation, their sense of smell was still acute enough to overcome the rain enough to detect animals beyond their line of sight.

Crawling up to the edge of where the tall grass ended and the stream began, the Original's antennae switched repeatedly in the air, shaking off water and 'tasting' the atmospheric currents. She could 'see' a small herd of a fat creature that loved the water just downstream, and towards that herd the party moved. They creeped and they crawled and they came upon the herd, watching it intently from the grass.

Carefully considering what the Original could remember about the animal, memories she did not know how she had, this animal was extremely territorial, especially towards smaller creatures. In fact, the Original could remember seeing one eat a Worker once. An idea occurred to her.

Looking back at a Worker, she pointed at it with the end of her claw and then lightly tapped her own thorax. The Worker didn't get it at first, so instead the Original did the same motion twice more. Still, the Worker didn't understand. Finally, the Original simply crawled over, wrapped her claw around the Worker's neck, and dragged it to the edge.

Releasing it, she pointed at one of the animals on the edge of the herd, spewing water onto itself, then at the Worker. Pretending to crawl towards the herd, the Original made a lot of subtle, crazy movements, as if to draw attention. The Worker watched, then looked at the herd, then at the Original, then at the herd, and then at the Original.

Almost immediately, it tried to retreat into the grass, but the Original snatched it up and tossed it onto the embankment, pointing once more at the herd. The Worker's options were clear; she could attract one's attention, or get beaten like the Opposing Soldier had been.

Stumbling at first, the Worker crawled carefully within what it thought was line of sight of one of the beasts, and then smacked the water with one of her claws. The animal on the edge of the herd's ears pricked up, but it did not immediately turn to face the Worker. A second splash got its attention, bringing the great beast's eyes to bear on the small, three feet tall ant. Breath whooshed out of the beast's nostrils, anger flaring in its mind. Still, the animal did not charge.

The Worker threw its claws at the beasts, and swayed from side to side, as well as pretending to inch forward before retreating in an attempt to incite the creature, but it was strangely docile. Perhaps the rain and mud made it feel less inclined towards throttling the ant.

Glancing back for just a moment at the secluded party in the grasses awaiting the Worker was enough to inform her that the Original was not happy. Thus, she looked left and looked right, deciding to pick up a river rock. The Worker hurled it with all her might, dinging off the great beast's hide. Another breath left its nostrils, this one far stronger than before, as it began charging angrily towards the hapless ant. Thankfully, the beast's comrades looked at their charging friend, and then the tiny ant, and decided the problem could be handled alone.

Meanwhile, the ant whipped around and ran as fast as possible towards and into the grass, lucky that the mud and distance slowed the beast enough that she was safely back with the party as the animal erupted into the grass.

Both Soldiers leapt into action immediately, literally jumping onto the back of the rotund creature and swiftly beginning to drive the sharp points of their claws into it repeatedly. The Original even bit her mandibles down around its neck, trying to rip its head off. They managed to make some penetrating wounds before being bucked off, each time leaping once more onto the beast's back, but its hide and fat was simply too great.

Slowly, the Original was beginning to regret engaging this thing with just the four of them, two of which were practically useless. Retreat began to become an option, but as she fought and envisioned what might happened, she kept seeing at least one of them getting eaten.

And so, in desperation, she leapt down from the beast, snatched up a Worker, and as the creature turned to face her and roared, the Original threw the panicking Worker into its mouth with all her strength as if the Worker were a stick. The hope was maybe it would buy them time to escape, and better to lose the weaker member of the group than a strong one in her mind.

Yet things didn't turn out that way. The Worker somehow ended up lodged in the beast's throat, causing it to start spasming and trying to throw the ant up, but it was simply just too small to remove and too large to swallow. What muscles the animal had around its throat were also too weak to crush the thick chitin exoskeleton of the Worker, and so, it slowly suffocated to death.

Bewildered, the Original pulled the still-thrashing Worker out of the dead animal's maw once it stopped moving, and set the panicked ant down. Carving out a piece of meat slowly, the Original handed it to the untouched Worker and then pointed in the direction of the Nest before then pointing at the carcass. The Worker got the gist of it, already knowing from its ancestral millennia of how harvesting corpses too big to move went. The Nest would eat well tonight and for some time to come. Perhaps even enough to manage to successfully hibernate through the rainy season.


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Hidden 1 mo ago Post by Tal
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"TOOOOOOOOT!" Manehair blew into his wooden horn from his place at the twig-boundary of Highholt, and within seconds another two feighd were by his side, looking over the protective barricade to see the danger. A great beetle was making its slow way towards them. They had by now grown accustomed to this sort of thing. Only yesterday they had spotted a couple of termites chomping on the barricade, and in the end could only chase them off by poking them with sticks whose tips had been set alight from the firefruit. However the beetle that was now coming towards them was far bigger than any termite and its bony exterior seemed utterly impregnable. Manehair placed a small projectile in his pipe and blew it at the beetle, but it bounced off and did not seem to have any effect at all on the beetle. It only kept coming closer to the barricade, and if anything the projectile seemed to draw its attention to their very location.

The three feighd tooted their horns and each one of them took up a stick and prepared to engage the insect, but just before they did so their Queen had suddenly arrived and was surveying the scene with her imperious gaze. He considered the beetle with distaste and gestured to the firefruit. Immediately a burning stick was brought to her. She looked at the firefruit for a few moments, a curious but determined look in her eyes. She gestured for everyone else to step away and then flew over the barricade so it was only her and the beetle. In length the beetle matched the Queen's height, though the Queen towered above the sturdy and heavily armored insect. They had come across one just like it before, and no matter how much they poked with their sticks, even burning ones, it could not get through its tough armor. It was as hard as tree bark, if not harder since the firefruit could burn bark at the very least!

Now the feighdqueen stood before the insect, which luckily had no mandibles (unlike other beetles, some boasting enormous mandibles or great long horns). This one's great strength was clearly its impregnable armor. When their attempts to dissuade and hurt the first one they met failed, Bluebell had suggested flipping it over to see if maybe its underside was more vulnerable, but try as they might they could not flip the heavy, stocky insect over. And it was in any case a swift creature and turned on them with its small mandibles and forelegs, forcing the smaller feighd to retreat. Now however it was the feighdqueen who stood before it, and she had a glint in her eyes and a degree of excitement. As the beetle closed in, the Queen sucked in the firefruit until it was all gone. But rather than swallowing it, as she usually did, she held it in her mouth and took a deep breath. Then, when the beetle was less than an inch from her, she exhaled with all her might.

Fire exploded from her mouth and nose, and it erupted even from her fingertips. Mixing with her latent magic, it grew towards the beetle and ate at it. But it was wild and untamed and burned at the Queen also, and she screeched in terror and pain and backed away. Her face was singed and her beautiful hair and wings were blackened and burnt. Her fingers were blistered and puffed, and her beautiful dress of leaves and plants came loose and fell apart, leaving her in her primitive nakedness. Instinctively she covered herself, and tears fell from her eyes even as her loyal feighd fluttered around her and attempted to cover her with leaves and vines and petals. It was only when they had clothed their Queen once more that their attention returned once more to the beetle, and they were awed when they found that it was utterly dead.

They turned to their ailing Queen and ooed and aahed, and she for her part tried to look regal and powerful. But she winced and weakly gestured for them to return her to her flower throne. And so they did. She stayed there and hung between life and death, and when Treeface brought her some of the firefruit so she could eat her eyes widened fearfully and she screeched at him to keep it away. And so she grew only weaker... [Because what she did is quite big, I'm leaving it to the GM whether she recovers or dies]

Meanwhile, Redflower and Bluebell had been busying themselves around the beetles carcass and had managed, by flipping it over to its vulnerable underbelly and by using little sharp stones and thorns, to strip its extremely hard exoskeleton. They reasoned that just as the beetle used it for protection so could they! They would fix it and work on it until they had made a fine beetle-armour dress for their mighty and glorious Queen!

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Hidden 1 mo ago Post by 6slyboy6
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6slyboy6 The More Awesomest Potato

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Day 1, Week 6, Cycle 1
Springtime - Beginning of Monsoon Season, 15 C°, Thunderstorm



As the days pass and the rain becomes more and more incessant, greeting the inhabitants of the Continent all the more often, the winds of change began to show their true fangs as the day of the second week rolled around. It was a thunderous crack, as if the sky was about to split in half, that woke up the inhabitants of the islands. Then another followed in it's wake, and the sky lit up with a brilliant white light as an arc of lightning split the horizon in half. In it's wake, the worried screams and noises of animals could be heard as they fled from the palce that was struck by lightning. The rain fell from the sky with such intensity that smaller rivers had already begun forming from just the water falling from the sky and pools of water began to swamp and bog down the grasslands. The wind howled with in an eerie tone as it grasped at the trees, violently shaking them and sending leaves and branches flying off into the distance. The great monsoon has finally arrived.

It was a great and violent storm that encompassed the entire Continent in mere hours. Those animals that had shelters made sure to hide in them well. Those that couldn't carried on, paying mindful attention to their rainy surroundings. The ground began to move in thick flows of mud and water, and the landscape was covered in a dreary gloom as the sun failed to pierce through the thick black clouds above and provide the land with it's life giving sunshine. It would surely be a tough time for everyone and everything on the Continent, and no doubt the landscape they had just begun exploring would change by the time the monsoon finally dissipates and seeps away. But until then, the storm would not relent, and it would test if those living on the Continet were truly worthy of their newfound sentience.




On the isle of the Feighd, this could not have come at a worse time. Their queen lay injured on her flowery throne, burned by her own ambition as she tried to tame the raw and wild magic that lay within her, foreign to the world around herself. Now the petals flow in the wind from a nearby tree, it's curious blossoms thrown into the distance as the storm ravages the forest. Yet through the rain and the crashing waves that eat away at the shorelines of their island, all hope is not lost. The queen draws breath, and though her state is not dire, it is certainly worrysome. She lays in a coma, not responding to anyone or anything, and her pulse is faint, but still there. Her beautiful wings and hair are charred, but even injured and helpless like this the air seems to fizzle with magical energy around her, even more so than usual. Could it be her own latent powers, or is something else at work...

Far to the west, deep within the homelands of many races, the Heidevolk gather under their great tree once again. The ground upon which they had built their houses is muddy and pools of water don the grasslands, some as big as smaller lakes. Their simple houses offer protection from the wind for a while, but as the rain begins to eat away at the mud that once bound their homes together, the rain and the wind begins to seep inside, and with time it is fearful that the simple houses will be blown away or simply collapse in the weather. Yet, they have held together for longer than the last ones they made. Yet as the wind howls and tears away at their great Yggdrasil, a different howl joins the mix. Above the nearby dunes, a pack of wolves appear, numbering perhaps a dozen, or less. Their ragged and wet fur is covered with mud, but they seem to pay no attention as they approach the Heidelvolk settlment. One of them seems more eager than the others: a great black wolf, the same one who Egein had once fed in the forest. Now it leads the pack as the stop a distance away from the settlement, making circles around it and watching carefully from a distance what the Heidelvolk are doing. They seemed tame for now, but who knew what they would do if they got hungry...

In the mountains of the east, the rains bring with themselves the smell of salt for the first time, the wind howling in a deep tone as it pierces the rocky outcrops of the Crowe. Though the wind falls and the storm rages, their rudimentary stone buildings hold up well against the wind, even if they seem to leak with water, as the sound of a thousand drips echo through their basic settlement. The past days they have been able to gather many pelts and meat from fleeing animals that fell into their traps, and they were able to stockpile an abundance of various mushrooms that sprouted from their humid hideouts with the coming of the rain. Yet they could no longer traverse the land so easily: massive flows of mud descended from the mountain, down the steep slopes of their home, cutting off routes that they ahd previously traversed. Deep mud made it nearly impossible to make progress through the areas of the mountain that they could still traverse, and the forest was reduced to a dark maze of howling woods that seemed to shift with every breath of the wind. Prey would surely be hard to come by...

The Artias had split up, and now their small groups traveled the lands by their lonesome. The three tribes have made much progress exploring the land and adapting to it, but as the thunder cracks and the flash fills the sky, they too are faced with the hrash reality of the monsoon. The Red Group has not seen big game for two days now, and the meat from their last hunt is starting to run low. All the animals they have seen have been even morecautious than before, and ran away before they could get close. The Blue Group had fared somewhat better, the rare fruit of the spring blossom giving them enough food to get through the day, and their wooden huts faring relatively well against the weather, and though they were neither dry nor warm, they were still far better than standing out in the rain. And the Green Group has had perhaps the most luck, their fish traps abundant with fish trapped in them, unable to escape because of the river's stronger flow, even if they began getting buried in the mude and debris that the rivers carried along with them. Indeed, retrieving these fish have become quite the task for the Artias who now had to go deep into the raging river to clena and maintain these traps if they wanted to capture more than just mud and branches...

The Mordukai were having a feast in their cozy homes far in the western hills, yet they faced similar problems to everyone else. While they wind bothered them not, and they still had some food left, the incessant rain began to eat away at their mound. Their water traps starting to fill up more and more, leaking away less water as the ground around them became increasingly more humid. Eventually the hard ground began to show signs of erosion even underground by the afternoon of the first day, the water seeping between the cracks down to their homes and dripping inside the tunnels. With no sign of the rain stopping soon, this could become a problem for the hive that they have not had to face for many generations in the arid grasslands of the north. Uncomfortable for most, the rain began to threaten their home and existence...




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Hidden 26 days ago Post by Ascendant
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Mordukai


Day 1, Week 5, Cycle 1

Drip. Drip. Drip. Plonk.

The Original stirred from her sleep once more, agitated by the incessant dripping that seemed to grow stronger and stronger in their once secure home. Rising up on her six limbs, as she took a step, a light splash was heard. The Mordukai, being insectoid in nature and thus encased in chitin, were not known for their ability to tactilely feel anything at all other than perhaps heat. Their hard exoskeleton simply made the sensation of touch impractical. Thus, it was a surprise to the Original when she found the ground giving way slightly as she took steps, surrounded by a thin layer of water.

Typically, Mordukai nests were reasonably hardened against both rain and wind, the wind simply passing far overhead, and the rain either collecting in the U-shaped tunnels leading up to chambers or soaking down into the groundwater. The insects would then simply hunker down in their chambers with their trapped air and hibernate out the rain at a very low metabolism, waiting for evolutionarily evolved triggers that would awaken them once the humidity dropped. Things were different this time though.

The Original crawled over to the entrance of the tunnel leading to the main chamber, entering it a few feet before finding it completely full of water. She decided to turn around, and returned to the chamber, circling it, listening to the droplets of water and testing the walls with her claws. As she struck one of the walls lightly, part of it collapsed onto the Original, causing her to leap towards the center of the chamber. The nest was unstable. With the rains not abating, it was possible that they might all drown down here.

Unable to effectively communicate this to her sisters, the Original simply began tunneling into the portion of wall that collapsed at a 45 degree angle upwards, strengthening it as she went and removing debris. Within a few minutes, Workers had joined her as they realized what she was doing, and the nest began moving into action collectively. Other Workers scurried about transporting eggs and larvae closer to the escape tunnel, once the other two Soldiers in the nest worked together to move the Queen into position to escape. As they worked, little balls of soaked dirt would occasionally fall from the sides of the nest, making the Mordukai move faster.

An hour later, the Original busted through the final layer of dirt, causing a small stream of rainwater to begin pouring down into the nest, but this was of little consequence. She emerged onto the surface and took up position looking out at the environment for predators as the other Soldiers brought the Queen up first, being the most important member of the nest.

It was the first time the Original had ever seen the Queen, her frail form attached to the enormously bloated abdomen full of eggs. She was perhaps 75% egg sack and 25% body, much of her legs and arms having withered away. While a human might look at this and feel aghast, it was normal for Mordukai. The Soldiers set her down on a patch of wet grass, all three Soldiers forming a defensive triangle around her.

Meanwhile, the Workers formed an ant chain, transporting egg and larvae from claw to claw up to the surface. As they did that, the Original observed their surroundings carefully.

The wind was fierce today, rocking the treetops and at times even cutting down into the undercanopy, the rain constant and thick. It poured in both droplets from the air and small streams from the trees, and there were no animals in sight. All had decided to take shelter. In contrast, the Mordukai stood now resolute, in the open against the wind and rain, determined not to perish.

One Queen, three Soldiers (two carrying the Queen), eight Workers, each Worker carrying at most four larvae or a pile of eggs, they began moving further uphill, travelling primarily North. Their objective was simple, keep moving to safety and ride out the storm, relying upon their stored fat and the plentiful water surrounding them.
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