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 Whiskey Dreamin

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Rends the Gar

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Posts : 414
Join date : 2013-08-29

PostSubject: Whiskey Dreamin   Sat 06 Jan 2018, 22:57

Dawn broke early and clear over a lonely old fort in the middle of Northern Mexico, and Rends was once again thankful he couldn't get hungover. Well, not on normal stuff at least. He'd never admit it, but the Fianna brews had gotten the best of him a time or two. He took a minute or two to rub his eyes before rising from the simple cot Judge - no General Bean had provided him. The rest of the pack and Carver lay in their own cots shared between the two rooms they'd been granted. Zas splayed out in the next cot over, still wearing his boots and poncho with the poncho flipped up over his face. He snored contentedly, holding a mostly empty bottle next to him like a dear child. Rends chuckled quietly and gathered his things then stepped through the door and made his way downstairs.

On his way out he snagged a sausage or two, nodding in greeting to the couple of early risers who were already out and about. He didn't have any real reason to leave the fort, but he wanted to have a few minutes of quiet to meditate, and any place a swindler like Bean held sway wasn't likely to offer any kind of quiet for long. So he munched his breakfast as he headed out into the mesquite in search of a piece of quiet.

He found it not far out from the fort in the form of a rock outcropping jutting up into the Eastern sunrise. The top wasn't much higher than he could have reached in Crinos so he scrambled up the sloped back and took a minute to take in the view. This was a harsh land; unforgiving to those who entered it carelessly or didn't show it proper respect. Nothing rose higher than a tall man save the barren rocky mountains. They stood out like the broken teeth of a giant. Their smile followed the gentle curve of a far off river. Though there was plant life aplenty the only real greenery followed the riverbed until it vanished into the distance. Rends took it in, breathing in the smell of dust and mesquite and the musky scent of pronghorn. Far away Rends thought he could pick out the scream of a cougar.

Ya, this'll do.

He soaked it in for a long moment and just let the sun trickle into his bones as the world came to life and Luna shied away to allow Helios his time to shine. He sat cross legged on the rise with his hands resting on his knees. He'd started this morning ritual years ago when he'd been just a boy trying to escape his new responsibilities and not really caring just what a Bane was or why he should kill them. He'd had so much jumbled up in his head back then that he'd just wanted to get away and be angry at the world. So he had, and over the years he'd developed it into a comfortable routine. Closing his eyes, the Full Moon looked inside.

He breathed deeply and focused on the feel of air moving in and out of him as he closed his eyes. In tandem with his breath he could feel his heart beating its slow steady rhythm, and running in a counter to that steady beat was the violent loud crashing of his Rage. It burned like a furnace, thrashed like a starving beast; even as Luna hid her face he could feel her urging him to action. At another time he would have found it a struggle to keep control of it, but this was an old struggle and he was a scarred veteran. He breathed, in and out, blood flowing and Rage crashing. In and out. Beat after Beat. Crashing and pushing. It all added up into a chaotic jumble of heat, life, lust, and sheer motion. And there, in the middle of it all Rends found the quiet he'd been seeking. Or rather, not a quiet, but the small place between the furious sounds and feelings where there was a kind of harmony rising above the chaos. It was such a tiny thing that Rends felt he could almost hold it in his hands, but it was there.

He felt warm tingles crawl up his spine. A cool breeze played over him, taking him out of the revel for a moment. Still holding onto the harmony he reached to his side and pulled free the Dream Knife, laying it across his lap and resting his hands atop it. Still focused on the warring forces inside he fed the fetish a bit of spiritual power. He felt the power flow down his arms and into the knife. Rage, blood and breath all rose in their tempo. They clashed and clanged together and rose to a crescendo. He could feel his teeth rattling together. He thought they'd shatter from the power of the war being fought inside him. Then all went quiet; he could feel the harmonious echo far off, but all else around and inside him had gone still. He opened his eyes.

All was black around him. No sound, no scent, no features dotted the landscape. Nothing. The world was gone. He blinked. A Crinos form Garou with bat ears wearing familiar etched leather armor stood before him. Madness danced in her eyes. Even as he looked the world came to light, and Rends felt a terrible heat wash over him. Lakes of fire burned around him but they were empty. Their inmates nowhere to be seen. Penelope was now beside him. They turned to face each other. He blinked. She laughed and her eyes rolled out of her face into her lap. Silver poured forth from the twin wounds and out from the burning sockets tiny mouths formed and laughed with the voice of Mocks the Night. He blinked.

He was at Roaring Jack's Moot. He stood denouncing the man who'd become his father. Challenged him. Struck him down. Looking down he picked up the severed head and held the trophy aloft with a howl of triumph that died in his throat. Something was wrong. His Tribe cheered around him. He searched their faces looking for something. Tames the Weaver met his gaze. He was old, but still strong. Standing at what would have been Jack's right. He turned his back and left Rends to his victory. He blinked.

The Forked Ash burned. The Mother screamed in pain as the earth trembled. Here in the Heart, in the seat of Nation power he stood bloodied and weary. He saw Zoe torn apart by Stink Apes at the far side of the cavern. Eaton clashed with a huge monster of flesh and spikes and fangs. He fell when RIP Ford ripped into him with silver from behind. It was all too much. They'd already lost everyone else. Now just he and Rawest Wind remained. The Mother screamed again as the earth trembled. Rends readied himself to die. The two warriors shared a final handshake then turned to meet their fate. There was a tearing sound and the High King fell to a hoard of banes pouring out of the Caern Heart. Rends felt the Mother die. He blinked.

He looked out over the still plains. Tepees and campfires stood before him. The buffalo had left, but the white man wasn't out here. Not yet. They could rebuild. His gaze followed the smoke trails upwards, and there in the sky he saw two paths before him. Upon one stood a tall Garou with dark hair and many scars with open hands. On the other lay darkness and mystery. He knew on one lay salvation for his people, but also death. Upon the other lay damnation. He looked down and he was falling into a lake. Ice bit into him and froze his eyes. Fish ate his lips. He screamed. The Wyrmcommers came and damned them all. Crying out against the end he thrashed and broke through the ice holding him down. But now the world was all crystal. Obsidian trees hung like death enshrouded over him. Their razor wire branches whipping his face in the furious wind. He cried out to the spirits for help. There was a far off whistle and the wind died. He blinked.

Blackness had returned. All was quiet and still. But no, there was a sound. A gentle weeping off in the distance. He focused, and it drew closer. Then suddenly before him there was the frail form of an emaciated girl in leathers. She had her back to him and her face framed in long gnarls of blonde hair. Rends tried to speak her name but found his voice had left him. She wept for a time. He reached up a hand to grip her shoulder. The moment he touched her she whirled around. Her face was squished up and wrinkled. Long pointed ears stood up at full attention. She screamed and barred long fangs. There was hatred in the scream. Hatred and mocking. She pulled his face close, and Rends could see madness in those familiar eyes. She screamed again. Millions of bats poured out of her mouth as she moved closer and closer. They bit and scratched at his face as they screamed past. Beyond them all he could sense a thing lurking, laughing, mad beyond reason and toying with him. Then he felt lips on his lips and the bats poured into him. Fangs bit out his tongue and lapped up his blood, the lips never lit him go.

He opened his eyes. The sun had fully risen now. He blinked against his brightness. He fought down the initial wave of revulsion and nausea. Focused on breathing, he managed to hold onto the peaceful harmony and let it bring him out of the vision. It took several minutes, but he was able to wrangle his emotions under control. Soon enough he blinked his eyes into focus on the world around him. He took one more deep breath, then got to his feet and tucked away his gear. He dusted his britches, doffed his hat, and hung his knife on his belt before hopping off his rock. On the way back to the fort he started whistling to himself. Once, years ago and miles away he'd let his emotions lead him out into the wilderness to escape his duties. Now, he came out here to find focus and clarity. The knife didn't always show him such stark visions; it only replayed what he'd dreamed. But he'd found that the more pleasant his dreams were the more complacent he became. It was a beautiful day, and he'd learned to enjoy those whatever may come.
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