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 Cold Winds

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Zas B'ul

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Posts : 628
Join date : 2013-08-29
Location : Texas

PostSubject: Cold Winds   Mon 09 Sep 2013, 15:01

The journey through the mountains had not been easy. The snow was 3 ft. deep in most of the steep and cragged mountain passes, as was to be expected this time of year. The howling wind that blew in the chill air was also somewhat to be anticipated, yet, the ferocity in which it drove the blinding white blanket of snow against both Zas and his horse seemed to be almost personal. Eventually though, they pushed through. The warm desert heat awaiting them on the far side of the pointed peaks was extremely inviting after the difficult travel but Zas knew better than to over exert himself, especially given that he was now in enemy territory. He decided to let his horse rest as he walked along beside it. Not walking through the thick snow allowed the two to make up some time, but eventually the hot sun went down. The heat and warmth of the desert vanished with it, and they were replaced by a cool breeze.

Even though a bright campfire may have sounded pleasant, it was not worth risking the attention of any possible adversaries, so Zas just made camp in a sheltered rocky outcrop for the night.

He didn't sleep very well, for every snake rattle, owl hoot, or bobcat scream, warned him of potential opponents approaching his position. He decided it was best to not linger around any more than necessary and began the continuation of his journey a few hours before sunrise.

He ran afoul of no creatures or enemies for the remainder of the day, though he did reach the first river. The same was to be said for the next day, managing to cross the second river, but also seeing no enemies. The day following that as well resulted in no Commanche sightings. In fact, he found it to be incredibly odd, that he had seen no one and nothing for miles; Indian settlements or Whiteman caravans alike. Desert living was tough-sure, but all the land he'd traversed thus far had seemed fertile enough.

Any questions as to why the area was seemingly deserted were answered shortly by the untimely arrival of a massive thunderstorm that seemed to come from out of nowhere. The only clue as to it's approach was a soft constant wind that continued to become increasingly stronger the further on he rode, kicking up dust and tumble weeds reducing his vision to nil. The torrential downpour of rain combined with the intense lightning strikes that followed would have been powerful enough to cause even the strongest tee-pees back home to struggle to stay planted in the ground. Zas again decided it best to walk beside his horse until the storm subsided, as it also made restraining the skittish animal slightly less challenging.

The dry desert ground quickly turned to mud as the storm progressed, causing Zas' pace to slow slightly, but as there were no real shelters to find for cover or to wait out the storm he kept walking. Eventually however the storm did end, vanishing as quickly as it had arrived.  

It was here, as the storm lessened, that Zas began to see the first signs of life once more. Rabbit trails winded across his path, followed closely by coyote prints. Vultures appeared in the distance hovering over an animal of some sort in it's last stages of life. A few wagon wheel tracks and horse prints also cropped up here and there. The main indicator of life unfortunately for Zas, was the presence of Commanche scouts who eyed him warily from afar. To make matters more challenging, he had just about finished the last of his meals and the mud he had traipsed through during the storm was beginning to rapidly dry and cling to him thanks to the return of the desert Sun-which made walking less than pleasant as his wet, muddy clothes stuck to him in all the wrong places. The most tragic part of this all was that during the storm he seemed to have gotten turned around. Zas wasn't sure where to head.

The scouts made no move towards him as he struggled to figure out where he needed to go, but they also didn't leave. As night fell upon the desert, no further progress had been made, as Zas was still lost and the scouts were still out there in the dark somewhere, Zas knew. The only bright thing about the situation was that tonight there was a bright full moon which would make approaching him sneakily that much more difficult, and the night sky was free of any cloud cover, revealing a beautiful starry sky.

As Zas sat, staring upwards he tried recalling the directions he'd been given. There was something Chief Gómez had said, if he ever lost his way, but Zas just couldn't recall what he'd said as he'd honestly only been halfway paying attention; he'd been so giddy about finally getting the chance to be a Silent Strider, he'd failed to pay attention to the details he needed to make that dream a reality.

His pity party was cut short by the loud cry of Commanche warriors that seemed to be closing in on him from all sides. Without hesitating, he jumped up on his horse and bolted off in a random direction, not eager to try and take on multiple opponents in the dark. He chanced a look behind him to see if he was followed, to see a war band of Commanches hot on his tail.

Zas glanced up at the moon offering a prayer to the spirits for guidance. As he finished the prayer an arrow whistled by his ear, and it was at this instant that something between his own subconscious mind and what sounded like a distant whisper spoke to him saying, "The brightest star will guide you..."

Zas glanced back up at the night sky, searching for the brightest star. He found it, shining clearly through the darkness, off to the far left. He readied himself on his horse and then made a quick sharp and sudden jerk on the horse's mane as he threw his feet on the ground briefly to act as extra support to keep from falling over. It was a risky, tricky, maneuver, but it paid off. The two nearest Commanche warriors tried to follow him, but weren't able to mimic his sudden veer to the left. One ended up falling off his horse, the other was forced to put some distance between Zas as he took more of a wider turn. The rest of the enemy War band however were able to slightly adjust their course and continued to bear down on him.

Zas B'ul's horse was beginning to tire however, and as he looked behind him once more, the War band continued to gain ground.
Fortunately, the third river was in sight and the path to cross it bottle necked between to cliff faces. If Zas could make it to the river he could potentially lose them. He urged his horse on.

Zas made it to the river (more of a steady flowing stream really), but just barely. A few Commanche arrows had found their mark in his back and left shoulder. He reached the far side of the river and jumped from his horse, which was more than willing to accept a reprieve. Zas dove into the stream, taking a deep breath as he did so. He transformed into the Hispo form while underwater and eagerly awaited the first of his pursuers now that he was more prepared.

The first few horses stormed into the water racing full speed ahead. The horses didn't even feel their riders get shoved off their backs as Zas leapt from under the water and tackled the first 3 to the ground, viciously mauling them to death before they could recover from the surprise assault. The next nearest Commanche's in the War band saw their friends being torn asunder and raced to their defense to beat back the large predator.

Zas saw the charging indians, and heard their loud war cries. They meant little to him, as he was filled with a pure violent rage similar to that of his very first change but more controlled. He sprang from their dead bodies transforming into Glabro form and brandishing his calvary sword as he did so, much to the enemy Commanche's horror.

The first swipe caused a nice clean deep gash across the nearest couple of men's chest. A third man was able to un-sling his bow, before both he and it were bifurcated. Zas then leapt to the ground in a challenging and intimidating manner and show of force as he howled at the rest of the war party-who summarily turned at fled.

Zas waited until he was certain they were gone before he returned to his Homid form and returned to his horse. He found his horse grazing contently in a green field near the river's far edge. He decided to make camp here for the night as it was as good a place as any.

He awoke the next morning and hunted a female deer for a few days provisions, before readying to continue his journey.
He was on his way by early morning, and reached the last river by midday.

The trip upriver was rather uneventful, thankfully. Water from the river was plentiful, and small game was abundant. No other interruptions or intrusions from the Commanche or any other tribe occurred.    

As the river split into smaller tributaries, the terrain gradually became more wooded. The trees more thick and broad. A small cliff overhang was only one of many distinguishing features that stood out to Zas. The birds and other sounds of nature that had been very dominant leading up to this place, were absent. The entire area was devoid of any noise aside from the wind blowing through the tall trees. There was also strange looking spear embedded in the ground that seemed to further mark the uniqueness of the area. It was definitely from the Caddo tribe based on some of the markings Zas could make out as he approached it.

As Zas neared the spear, a low deep howl greeted him, saying
"You would be wise to leave that where it lay Stranger."

Zas searched for the identity of the creature that spoke, but couldn't see anything. He stepped down from his horse and backed away from the Spear, however, not wanting a fight as he was tired from the long journey. He called out, "I mean no harm. I seek an audience with chief Direspirit and Scents-The-Lies. I bring word from chief Gómez of the Na-Ta-Hay. "

There is a moment of silence, that is then followed by a quick rustle of leaves, and then again more silence. Zas is left to wonder if perhaps he had just simply imagined the voice. His doubts are eventually put aside however, when around dusk a large group of armed Warriors approached his position weapons drawn. Zas waits until they are within spitting distance and the group comes to a standstill, before he begins, "The words I have to say are for Chief Direspirit and the warrior known as Scents-The-Lies."

There is a bit of rustling that arises from within the armed Crowd to Zas left side and to his front. Eventually a reddish-black furred Crinos-form warrior steps up from the crowd and stands directly in front of Zas' face. The creature is 9ft. tall, extremely muscle bound, and very fit and trim. As he stands there, Zas notices the edges of the fur are beginning to grey, and upon the Garou's head rest a head band with red and white interwoven markings and a long trail of eagle feathers protruding from it. By the headwear Zas is able to ascertain that the one before him must be Direspirit. What he couldn't figure out is why he had been approached with such hostility, and why the chief was in his Crinos form.

Before he started to speak, the rustling to his right ceased as the crowd parted to make way for a tall, dark, tan-skinned man with a noble, deliberate bearing approached. His hair was white and starting to yellow slightly with age. He seemed to be missing apart of his ear, but was otherwise in good shape. He waved formally to Zas which allowed Zas to make out the man's long and sharp nails.

Zas returned the greeting, at which point the other man smiled, revealing the equally sharp teeth. The two strangers to Zas looked on expectantly. It was then that Zas began speaking, delivering the message between the two men, constantly shifting his head back and forth as he addressed them.

"My name is Snowy Owl (Zas B'ul- in apache). I travel here on behalf of Chief Gómez to ask for aid. He makes war on the White man. They have sided with our enemy the Commanche, and seek to force us away from our lands or to destroy us entirely."

The Chieftain standing before Zas remains quiet. The man to Zas' right spoke, "Your message is delivered. Chief Direspirit and Scents-The-Lies have heard you. You may rest if you wish."

As Scents-The-Lies is speaking a loud noise is heard coming from behind Zas. Zas turns to face the commotion and all he hears is "Wot sont y'all gaspiller temps que yammering pour parler et de standing permanent pour? We have un visiteur? Permet d'avoir un party!!!" (Cajun-french: What are y'all wasting time yammering and standing about for? There is a visitor? Lets have a party!)

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