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 New Kids on the Block

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Zoe

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Posts : 498
Join date : 2013-09-02
Location : Nacogdoches, TX

PostSubject: New Kids on the Block   Sat 05 Oct 2013, 00:13

"Gaia's blood," Red-Oath grumbled as she tossed down a map of east Texas and ran her fingers through her hair. "How can something as tainted as Zoe's mockery friend just up and disappear?" The Spinning Wheels were gathered in the basement of Harriet's saloon, most of them crowding around a worn billiard table. In the table's center amid the tatted felt sat a stale corn cake, on which a handful of cockroaches were chewing pensively. Zoe sat next to Red-Oath, watching the tiny symbols of the Iron Rider totem eat and silently talk amongst each other. Two lanterns hung from the creaking wooden rafters, illuminating the sod walls and brick floor. Poet-Slayer was digging through his briefcase distractedly while Sanchez leaned back and relaxed, his booted feet propped up on the raised edge of the game table.  Ramirez was at the door, his attention divided between watching it and Red-Oath. The Ahroun stood ramrod straight, wearing his homid form like an uncomfortable starched shirt.  

"I haven't been able to find anything through my usual channels, and it has been almost a week." The dandified werewolf glanced at Zoe and his brow furrowed underneath his top hat, which he insisted on wearing even in the cramped basement. "Perhaps our newest Cliath simply miscounted? In the heat of battle, such miscalculations are understandable."

Sanchez smirked and gnawed on his cheroot. "I wouldn't lay the blame at Hears-the-Song's feet, Harry. Your 'usual channels' consist of a few Nacogdoches aldermen and some of the town drunks, and I ain't sure which of them is the more incompetent party."

"Unless you have managed to accomplish some mighty helpful clues yourself, Sanchez, I'd quit acting so smug." Poet-Slayer snapped his briefcase shut and glowered at the tatterdemalion Ragabash.

Lazily recrossing his feet on the table, Sanchez shook his head, watching the cockroaches enjoy their meal. "Can't say that I have, but I've been doing my little cunja thing all over town. Not much Wyrm taint left, those pattern-spiders clean up pretty thorough. I have started widening my search, but it'll take awhile to sniff all over town. L'il Kostas mentioned he was well dressed, but that ain't a lot to go on."

Zoe shifted her weight, considering if she should say something. Earlier that day she had experienced a strange vision that featured that same man, who appeared to be an important ruler of some sort, and suffered a fatal wound, yet still managed to reach out for his throne.  The vision perplexed her, but she had yet to mention it to Red or the others.  Perhaps now was the time to do so.

As the young wolf opened her mouth to speak, a gunshot rang out from the street in front of the saloon.  Curious as to the reason for shooting in town and eager to help if needed, Zoe stood up from the table and walked quickly toward the stairs leading to a side exit, her rifle slung over her shoulder.  

“Stay with us, Zoe.” Red and the others stood and made their way toward the door.  Zoe appreciated the Spinning Wheels keeping an eye out for her, but she was desperate to know what was going on up there.  Nevertheless, she followed obediently behind Red and Poet-Slayer as Ramirez and Slick-Blood pulled up the rear.  

The scene in the street was sadly none too unfamiliar.  A young Hispanic boy trembled a few feet in front of an older white man, who was holding the recently fired gun.  Zoe assumed the wallet on the ground between them was the source of contention.  

She immediately had flashbacks to her days with Rosco and the twins.  She had seen that look in the old man’s eyes many times before – before she learned to grab, run, and not look back.  Strangely those days, however frightful and stressful, were still nostalgic to think on because she had learned a lot from them about getting by on her own.  She could also empathize with the boy and did not appreciate that man threatening a poor child, who was likely just hungry.  

Before she could intervene, a young man of no more than 17- or 18-years old spoke up in defense, if you could call it that, of the boy.  He agreed that the boy needed to be punished but not with either end of a pistol because that would simply be a waste of good ammunition.  A group of Mexican farmhands entered the scene, unappreciative of the young man’s intervention in their affairs.  

Zoe had never seen the man or his traveling companion in town before.  Though they appeared human enough to the untrained eye, there was no doubt in her mind that they, and the native on horseback who had just caught her eye, were all like her.  What he lacked in age, the young man more than made up for in size.  Even if he was not one of Gaia’s children, he would intimidate those around him due to his height and muscular build alone.  The smaller wolf-man was very well-dressed, especially in comparison to the simply attire of the farm boy.  The native was dressed as one might expect, clearly he had no intentions of trying to hide his heritage.

What brings three new Garou to town, I wonder?  And all at the same time?  They do not appear to be traveling together, though the farm boy and the city slicker seem to have met before today, if only on their way into town.  The native seems to be alone and feeling a bit uncomfortable surrounded by so many non-natives.  I wonder if they, too, are recently changed.  Have they come to join our tribe or form a new pack?  They all seem a bit unsure as to why they are here.

The boy ran off and the other Hispanics left the scene.  The old man cursed and went away in the opposite direction.  As the situation dissipated the Spinning Wheels watched the three new Garou make their way into Harriet’s place.  Zoe once again followed Red’s lead and the two entered through the main entrance, approaching the table where the farm boy had made himself comfortable.  The native made it to him first, but the larger Garou seemed completely disinterested in if not entirely offended by whatever the native had to say.  Zoe wondered if they had a history or if it was simply the native’s race that made him repulsive to the European Garou.  Red motioned for the smaller Garou, who had taken a seat at the bar, to join the rest of them at the table.  

As introductions were made, Zoe immediately began wondering what the stories were behind each man’s deed name.  If they were not simply passing through, she would have plenty of time for inquiries into their names and personas later.

Where are they each from, I wonder.  Have they Garou tribes of their own?  They must if they have deed names.  I don’t know a lot about different tribes.  It will be fascinating to learn more about each tribe as I get to know these new characters.  I hope they are not simply passing through.

Red said her piece then left Hears-the-Song alone with Rends-the-Gar, Snowy Owl, and Mocks-the-Night.  Harriet bustled over with some drinks and accommodated Snowy Owl’s request for water.  The four young Garou cut to the chase and began discussing the mysterious letters they all received and the possibility of there being a fifth letter.  Red had suggested they not trouble the man in the deed claims office today, though the only reason she gave was Snowy Owl’s ethnicity.  Mocks-the-Night suggested they head over there anyway, but Zoe convinced the group to put it off for a day so they could gather some more information from Red and the others before heading out on their own.  

Rends-the-Gar surprised Zoe with a casual announcement that when all was said and done here in Nacogdoches, he would be taking her back to Galveston to stand trial in front of his tribe.  That was completely bewildering to Zoe.  Yes, she had killed three men the night before she left town, but it was an accident.  She could not control herself, which, according to Red, is not uncommon for newly changed Garou.  Surely Rends’ tribe knew that, so what reason would they have to judge her actions?  Though she desired to clear her name, as long as Rends didn’t give her any trouble, she would put the issue to the back of her mind.  Besides, she knew that Red and the others in the Camino Real sept would not simply let Rends take her back without her consent.  

The group was fairly quiet on their walk to the caern.  Zoe was deep in thought, puzzled still by the series of events that brought her and these three men to this place at this time.  Perhaps harm was meant for them by the writer of their letters.  Perhaps there was something on that land that only they could obtain due to their superhuman strength and abilities.  Perhaps it really was just a big joke, though it seemed a lot of trouble to go through just to make fools of a few werewolves.  

No matter who was immediately behind these happenings, Zoe believed that Gaia had brought the four of them together for a reason, perhaps even to form a newly commissioned pack.  Though they could not be more different, a soft-spoken native, a witty city slicker, a large farm boy, and a curious inventress, Zoe knew that they were destined to accomplish things that none of them could do alone.  The question remained, however – who in this realm wanted them here together?

The group arrived at the caern, but the area was deserted except for Papa Stagecoach and his vehicle.  After a quick chat that confirmed the existence of a fifth letter, Rita appeared in the clearing, followed shortly thereafter by the Spinning Wheels and about half of the Irregulars.  Lune-Stalker and Peace-in-Strength were both absent, which Zoe found strange, though Rita and Red seemed more annoyed than anything else by Lune’s disappearance.  

Both Rends-the-Gar and Mocks-the-Night had questions for Red concerning what she needed their help with and what was in it for them.  She informed them of a lead concerning the location of the fifth mockery and requested that the four of them investigate a local Jewish businessman and his estate.  Once again Zoe wondered if she should mention her vision from earlier that morning; however, once again, she was cut short.  

A pained and pleading howl tore through the otherwise quiet night.  It was coming from the south, but it did not sound like Lune-Stalker.  Zoe assumed it was Peace-in-Strength, though she was concerned with what could cause an ahroun to howl in such pain and desperation for help.  Mocks-the-Night suggested they head south to investigate the howl.  Zoe wasted no time following his lead.
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