|Rules and Guidelines|
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|Ringwe, 110 - Afternoon, hr 8|
As she walks out of the mines, she takes a deep, slow breath, closing her eyes for a brief moment. I need to get away... I can't handle this anymore... She scans the forest, the silence eery except for the small rustles of the squirrels skittering through the trees. She looks toward the north, the mountains in the distance looming over the forest where she stands. She looks back at the entrance to the mines, biting her lip, then turning back and looking up at the mountains once more. She takes a step toward them, a hint of hesitation visible in her body; she takes another, and another, and the entrance to the mines begin to look very small as she looks behind her one last time. She takes one more deep breath and looks ahead of her at the mountains, determination taking over her facial expressions. Soon, she is able to see an apple tree grove... she smiles to herself, and without looking back, she continues on.
|Losse, 111 - Sunrise, hr 4|
I tried to stay away. Serenity Canyon seemed like the best place, the place I should have stayed to make sure I was happy. I couldn't look at Sylvan...at papa with her...and be happy. Not when I felt as I did about him. It was bad enough that she was even in Magrathea still, and now...she was staying because of that stupid child.
Deep inside I hoped that Daffodil starved like so many others, or that Garrack would take her away like he did with Zinnia's daughter, but I couldn't express that to him. Not when I had hurt papa so much already. He was all I had; Calypso and Silke had gone to the ocean and Kieran was it. He was my lifeline to joy.
What a funny word, and an even funnier feeling.
|Losse, 111 - Sunrise, hr 4|
Ictinia slipped through the dark mine shaft, searching for more of the giant crawli's, she wanted more of the soft thread they spun to experiment with. The walls took on a red hue as she approached the magma pools... she crept warily here as a stong monster lurked. Last time she had tried to battle it she had to flee, it was too powerful. But this time she had a sword of the good shiny stone.....
She peered around the corner, her eyes reflecting in the pools of molten rock, the beast was there. It didn't seem to notice her, still licking it's wounds from their last encounter. Ictinia took a step closer, cringing as a small pebble crumbled beneath her foot, giving away her prescence.
The beast leapt up, whirling to meet her.... fiery eyes glowed with pure hate, the large four legged beast had blackened skin laced with a pulsing red, like the liquid stone it called home. Flames crept down its spine, and droplets of magma dripped from it's gaping mouth of razor teeth.
She steeled herself... this time I will take you down
Raising her sword she charged... hacking at the creatures neck, cutting deeply. It spun, raking claws across a shield barely raised in time. She took advantage of the opening and plunged her sword deep into it's exposed underside, she jerked the blade upward... ignoring the pain ias it's molten blood burned it's way past her hilt and down her arm. With a final groan the beast's heart gave out, her final thrust having pierced it's way through.
Ictinia slumped to her knees, hastily pulling her sword from the corpse and pouring clean mineral water on it and her injured arm. After resting briefly she moved to the fallen beast, taking her knife she sliced one of it's long ebony and crimson claws from the large paw and tucked it away to add to her collection.
One less danger for the others to worry about....
|Lote, 111 - Afternoon, hr 8|
Selections from a Journal
At last! A place free of sand! And with such tall trees! Much taller than the one back near the city. And so many creatures...my people could feast for years!
Though, I am cautious. I do not want to frighten those that I came to meet here. They are called Kain, Ilysa, and Drew; and, though, they somewhat resemble my kind...there is something a bit different. Much like the woman who came to Nefarka - Anu, but...not Anu. It is difficult to explain. They are very friendly. I am grateful for that having not seen another face in a few years...only the remnants of places others once lived...and died, in one instance.
I hated to leave the grave without a proper name; but...it was not right for the body to be left there with no one to attend to it.
They call this place the Vale. It is much cooler than the sands...trees, a river, mountains overhead...it is very beautiful. I can see why they are settling here. I have been helping them to gather an enormous amount of wood for...something. I am not certain what yet; but, there is enough here for a small village! I have never seen so much before!
I hope to help them more, but I am curious to travel to the place they came from the west. Haven, I believe they called it. Perhaps I will be able to lend aid there as well in some way. A little more here, and then I shall move on again.
One day my pilgrimage will end; and, I hope when it does, there will be a place much like this where I may settle. Perhaps then I will have found...well, nevermind that.
|Lote, 111 - Afternoon, hr 9|
The days have been warming again, and with that new things are happening here. For one, Cita's son Alden has returned from wherever he was roaming, he says he will be staying....and for that I am glad. Something about him.... he makes me feel a warmth inside that I've not felt before. He confessed when we were alone that I had caught his eye as well... he called me beautiful. Now whenever I see him my pulse races and I just wish to feel him close to me, though I try not to show it.
Rena I think, feels similar towards Rown, though he may not understand it yet. She tried to kiss him the other day and he thought she was trying to eat his face. Poor Rena... I only hope Rown figures it out before he hurts her feelings too much.
Cita has returned as well, though only for a visit. It was nice to finally meet my older sister. With Freya returning to the Dreaming I think she's the only elder female sib I have left. Her other son Arimus also passed through, but left after a few days to head back to where they call home. Still nice to see more family....
|Gurtha, 111 - Afternoon, hr 8|
The water was safe. The water was beautiful.
Sometimes he went to sit by the water's bank and watch the flowing water and the swimming fish-fish. He wondered what it would be like to be a Leiard-fish, but he hadn't tried yet to swim like the fish-fish did. He just thought about it.
Now was the time to find out, because it was too dangerous to stay out of the water. The new Ruik thing had made their di-di go away, so that she could do whatever she wanted with the Stoneshapers. Maybe she wanted to eat them herself, or feed them to the hairy monster that trotted by her side.
But her plans wouldn't succeed, because all the Stoneshapers were going to become Stoneshaper-fish first.
He and Saffi found the other children and explained about Stoneshaper-fish, Ruik things, and water. The other ones understood how important it was to get away from the Ruik things, how everything would be all right once they went to hide under the water.
Even though things weren't good now, they were going to get better.
|Gurtha, 111 - Evening, hr 10|
Why can't Cita just stay here? I love her and she loves me, she said so! She even showed me how to make a baby, although no baby appeared.
I was hoping her having a baby would make her stay. She couldn't just leave it without a mother. But she might have chosen her granddaughter anyway.
That stupid Otherkin came here, looking just like a Moonkin, if a little on the short side. Me and Rown made it leave, waved our swords around a bit, but we didn't hurt it. Not like I hurt its mother.
There wasn't any reason for Cita to get so upset about it. She even said it was right to keep Otherkin away from Moonglade, to respect our parents' wishes. Only Reed thinks otherwise.
But he wanted to kill this one, because it angered him that his Moonkin children were Returned while this thing that pretends to be Moonkin was still alive.
Except nobody killed it, we only sent it away. That made Cita so angry for some reason. I doubt she'll be back soon after that, maybe not before she's dead. I won't ever be able to have children with her.
She showed me how, though, so I can do it with one of the younger girls, when they're old enough. And I can tell them all how now, when before they'd have to ask Reed.
Rena is begging me to show her now. I won't yet, she's just a child. But when she's a bit older, I will, if she still wants me to.
Elza is a bit older than her, maybe even old enough. I think she could be a good mother. She's so helpful and smart. She helped me when mother and father were Returned, and she makes me healing things. She even helped me learn to read and write. She hasn't asked me, though.
The younger girls haven't asked either, which is good because they're way too young.
In any case, there will be new baby Moonkin here in Moonglade in a few years. I hope some of them will even be mine.
I'd thank Cita for that, but now she's gone.
|Lasse, 111 - Before dawn, hr 3|
A man is sitting near the river, gazing toward the south. I hadn't talked to him much; when I first arrived at Heart Haven, he merely commented on my name, how pretty it was; and when I returned from the mountain, he gifted me chestnuts. Despite him only having one wing and one hand, and not talking much, he seemed quite nice, so I went over and sat next to him. Speaking quietly, I asked him if he wanted to go south. The word "yes" beginning to form on his lips, he quickly replaces it with the reassurance that he did not have a reason to return.
"Where, exactly?" I asked curiously, a smile forming on my lips as I do so. The word "Aella" escapes his lips, with another reassurance that there is no reason for him to go back. My mind quickly jumps to thoughts of home- of Elisa, Rurik... the Aelleri dear to me. At these thoughts, I quickly ask if he somehow knows Elisa. He smiles and nods as he tells me she's his sister. A smile spreads across my face. "Why don't you come visit? She lives with us". This seems to pleasantly surprise him. Happy with his reaction, I continue even further, inviting him to come back with me. I don't see the harm- he knows Elisa, and I'm sure he'll love it back at home. He might even stay...
He agrees to come with me. I smile and walk over to Kanor, saying yet another goodbye and thanking him for his hospitality. I go over to the tree where my hide bag lies, slinging it over my shoulder and nodding at the man, beginning to head south. I can hear his footsteps behind me as I look into the pre-dawn light of the sky, the moon fading into nonexistence as the sun prepares to come out for another day. All the while, I think to myself, "I've made a new friend. This journey was worth it after all..."
|Vasa, 111 - Evening, hr 11|
While she didn't stay long on her first visit, she came back again. I gave her some of the chestnuts I prepared to make myself useful and to train working with one hand. Eating only chestnuts for a while I was sick of them anyway. She was very thankful about them.
I was thinking about Aella and about how my sister, Cesia and the other Aelleri are doing. Should I really carry out my promise and return? But what would would it help? They still think I am a monster and what if Eteni would take me again? They didn't kill me the last time, would they be able to do so now? No, I should better stay with the Moonkin. I owe them my life. They even lost Rufus because of me. Besides this I am sure, Kanor would kill me. At least he would certenly be able to do so. He promised to do so.
But still I want to know more about my... well the Aelleri kind. Maybe I could help Cesia to find a way to help other Taken ones. So all these poor children don't have to die, before ever having a chance to live.
Suddenly Ruby interrupted my thoughts. She wondered why I was staring south. Indeed I always towards the Aella mountain while thinking. Ruby asked, if I wanted to go south. I wanted to answer yes, but didn't end my thoughts. No! What would be their benefit of having an one-winged, Taken Aelleri. I am wasn't able to help them and they weren't able to help me. So, I said no. There was no reason to return. Still in my thoughts I forgot she didn't even know which place I was talking about and therefor that's what she asked next.
To my surprise she said, she knows my sister, Elisa and even asked, if I wanted to come with her. She told me Elisa would live with the Stoneshapers. Without thinking about it I agreed and began our travel in the same night. While traveling, I became uncertain whether this was a good decision. But I couldn't find any reason why it wouldn't be a good idea. After all I promised Elisa to visit her again. I would simply travel back, if there were any problems. But still.. Moonglade and Aella weren't very positive experiences. I had luck, surviving these visits. What if the destination this journey will be my dead?
|Kuile, 112 - Evening, hr 10|
"I'm back! And..."
He was glad to see Ruby when she walked in, since she knew things and wasn't unwilling to tell him. He didn't have to act older around her either, the way he did with Saffi.
Then she motioned behind herself, and his eyes alighted upon the creature with skin like the stone of the cavern. "This is Kontar. He's Elisa's brother. He's coming to visit us."
She had brought with her one of the Ruik things, a big one with glowing eyes and wings that hung from his arms. The boy couldn't draw his eyes away from the Ruik thing's arms, one of which ended in a stump which made him even uneasier than the other, clawed hand did.
He pressed himself against the edge of the bed, shaking his younger sister to wake her. "Saffi?" he murmured. He didn't dare to speak too loudly, in case that caused the Ruik thing to attack them.
Ruby frowned. "What's wrong? Kontar won't hurt you."
He froze and snatched his hand back, watching Ruby with a deep frown. They needed to run, but Saffi still remained asleep and his ankle still hurt when he moved it. He didn't even dare tell Ruby what was wrong. The Ruik thing would hear and know, and then it might eat him or Saffi.
He noticed that the Ruik thing watched him, teeth bared in a grimace, and he thought that Kontar knew how the Stoneshapers felt about him.
"'Uby, why you bring him here? He scary..." His brother understood. The Ruik thing was evil and scary, and it was going to hurt them with its claws and teeth.
Ruby didn't understand the way Tanek did, the way he and Zura and Saffi did. "I brought him here so he could see Elisa, and because I thought it'd be nice to have a visitor. He's not scary, he won't hurt you." There was a stern edge to her voice, like she was mad at them for seeing how scary the Ruik thing was, for seeing the truth. He wondered uneasily if bringing the Ruik thing here meant that she liked the Ruik things.
He tried not to feel betrayed. It wasn't Ruby's fault that she didn't understand, though she should have. She had seen Ruik kill the squirrel, bashing it to death with a piece of bone that rattled unpleasantly, and she had seen Ruik scream as though he wanted to kill them all.
They didn't need more Ruik things here to threaten them, and she brought this one home and treated him as amicably as she might treat a Stoneshaper or a Moonstone.
It was just...unfair.
|Rosa, 112 - Sunrise, hr 4|
We went together.
Cesia told us to gather wood for Anisa's final rest and because I love her, and not because I loved Anisa, not ever, I went. Tamir came along and I was happy. We were alone and away and it was interesting. There were storms and hot, hot days, and then he and I started to get closer to one another, and we hid under the trees, away from the stuff falling from the sky. We held one another close and ...
He said we should go back, so we did. I beckoned a deer with me and it helped me carry the box full of fruit and wood back up to our home.
When I got there, I started to feel real, real sick. So I went down to the mines, *my* mines now, to hear my ancestors sing to me.
I sit here now and wonder about how innocent and innocently cruel I truly was. We didn't know what we were doing and I remember feeling spiteful and hoping, wishing, that if I was going to have pups that they would all be boys, so I would not have to name any of them Anisa. She was a poor rani, selfish, and stupid. I didn't want any of my girl pups to be like her.
|Rosa, 112 - Midday, hr 6|
Anger is boiling up inside of me, thoughts raging inside my head like a whirlwind of hate: Why did I come back?! What was I thinking?! As calmly as I can, I exit the mines, walking outside and scanning the area before spotting a large tree, just next to the entrance of the mine. I walk over to it and sit down, propelling myself face-forward onto the ground as I put my hands over my head and just lie there, stewing in my own frustration.
See, Ruby, this is exactly why you left the first time... I don't care if they're your brothers and sisters, they just don't know how to behave!
Thoughts like these continue to fill my head until, finally, I sigh and turn my head to the side, resting it on my arms. I look at the forest ahead of me, glancing north as far as my eyes will go without me turning my head. I hear something coming from Rurik a bit further off, something about leaving... I perk up for a moment, hoping he'll say more, but when he doesn't I just relax and begin staring off into the forest again. My thoughts are now twisting, forming into things different than fury, quite different, actually.
I should just go back to Heart Haven... everything was so peaceful there. Kanor, that lovely man, made it so easy on me... My eyes flutter, eventually closing as a small smile spreads across my lips when I think about Kanor and Heart Haven. But my smile fades as my thoughts meld to think about everything other than him.
Him and Ennea... that beautiful woman, who always sleeps. She didn't wake once when I was there. Why would he fall for someone such as her? The... what do they call her... My face twists as I try to remember the word, and when I remember, I relax once more. ... mother, of his children, always sleeping. It's a shame.
I sigh heavily when I think of the little cottage, the sound of Timona's clogs hitting the edge of the porch happily filling my ears. When I hear her laughter again, my brow furrows, and I slowly sit up, a small frown appearing on my face. I can't just go back... go back and interrupt that life. No, I should stay, they need me here anyway.
I get to my feet, taking a deep breath before I walk back into the mines, expecting more childish yells to fill my ears when I go back in. This is the life I have, for now. I might as well do my best with it.
|Lote, 112 - Sunrise, hr 4|
Akana ('a teenage girl', sister of Hintai) kills the frog Nisa was playing with. Nisa is severely upset and loathes her aunt.
|Naur, 112 - Sunrise, hr 4|
She sat in the house, alone, locked away with what remained of her siblings.
She did not have enough wood to make them a proper place to rest…not even one of them, let alone both. So, she chiseled away at a stone to make a new box…the only one she had remaining now full of their possessions laying in wait to rest with them.
Her motions were stiff. Each crack of the chisel sent bits of granite flying in different directions. The dust and debris stung at the open wound on her palm, self inflicted from her own claws pressed harshly to her skin. As she worked, she thought…and her anger intensified…her eyes narrowed…her breath came in frustrated grunts…and the force of her strikes grew more and more violent. Finally, in one swift smack, the rock split in two rendering the box useless.
She stared at the ruin a moment, chest heaving, eyes flashing, her white-knuckled hands clutching the hammer and chisel as if they were the only things holding her to this world.
Eventually, her grip relaxed, the tools clattering to the ground at her sides. Her face contorted into a terrible grimace, tears rolling down her cheeks as her hands came to hide her emotions. Her shoulders quaked as she hunched over herself, rocking back and forth, whimpering. Unable to keep it in any longer, she threw her head back to let go of a long, primal, blood-curdling scream before collapsing, doubling over onto the floor as wracking sobs contorted her body.
“…I hate you…” She growled, her clawed hand raked slowly over the dirt floor. “…I…hate you…Aella…you and the other kavani…you do nothing but watch us suffer…”
She slowly pushed herself up on her hands, her head hung low, gaze set, as tears fell like rain to the ground. She trembled, barely able to hold her own weight.
“…Aella…” she hissed, “…why do you let this happen? …I Listen…I hear and I follow and I embrace…” Her hands slowly pulled into fists as she continued, her lips quirking into various snarls. “…I speak, but no one listens…I cry, but my tears fall without comfort…I try…what’s right…and you!” Her fist met the ground, denting the surface. “…you…do…nothing. …your children kill themselves, and for what? …Nothing but sadness rains on you...”
She folded her wings over her head, closing her eyes as she continued to sob quietly. “…sadness plagued my Ranis and Kavo into Vaedea’s comfort…your sadness took my siblings from me!...I have nothing left…not even my living bondmate wakes long enough for me to speak to him…”
“…did the three of you die when they did?”
Drawing herself into a ball, she rested her forehead on her knees. “...I loved Tobar so much and he never knew...I never said -” Her fists clenched, the pain from before returning to her palm. “...bring him back, the lot of you, if you are such the creators...that I could tell him how much he means to this fractured spirit...”
Her gaze rose to the broken box before her. Wiping her eyes, a drop of blood mixing with the salty tears on her cheeks, she pulled herself to her feet. She shook her head, brow furrowed as she shoved the granite away. Her eyes darted to the two lifeless forms covered by the downy feather blanket, harsh and filled with unbridled anger. “You have some nerve cursing us under Eteni’s name…you have some nerve! …things would have been so –“ She chewed her lip, wishing to speak more, wanting to scream at them; but, knowing full well it would be unheard, kept her hateful thoughts to herself.
She opened the door to the house, locking it behind her to keep them protected. With a heavy heart and a face marred by worldly abuse after extensive abuse, she left down the mountain to the forest she’d visited so many times before for the same thing she’d required so many times before.
“…you will both rest…as tradition calls…I will make sure of it.”
|Gurtha, 112 - Sunrise, hr 4|
Maern help me, what have I done?
All my life I have done as instructed to be a proper maiden.... stay quiet, remain calm, avoid needless emotions, keep your hands busy, watch over and protect the others, heal... but yet Maiden and the others treat me like a ghost. What am I to do? Be like my sisters and fuss or cause drama? I do not desire to be like them, I prefer my quiet contemplation with the goddess, but it would still be nice to get a little acknowledgement.
I worry about Maiden too, I think her emotions and personal desires have clouded her mind from the true will of Maern. If Slyphia was not ready to be a maiden... why whould Maern have allowed her to become fertile and produce two followers? I believe Maiden was just enraged that she let something like that slip out of her control and retaliated from her anger, not out of Maern's will. Ripping the young followers from their maiden Slyphia and giving them to Laila, then shunnning Slyphia was not the answer Maern would have wanted....
So I while in the forest I found a strange path, and a voice within told me to follow it, so I did, as I am obediant to the wishes of Maern. But I fear this may have brought Maiden's wrath down upon me, it would infuriate her that another would do anything without her consent. I can see distant figures down the trail... so I continue onward, letting the voices guide me... hopefully to somewhere where Maern's true will can be heard.
|Lasse, 112 - Before dawn, hr 2|
"No' so dark?"
"When the sun comes up, it won't be dark."
He listened to Mina's question and then to Ruby's answer, marshaling all of his strength and determination. He would show Mina - he would show everyone! She had been the one to tell Ruby that he'd fallen, even though he hadn't needed any help. He had just lost his balance, though there hadn't been a rock like he'd said there was.
"Sohnnn?" Now his tone didn't show how rattled he had been. His sisters seemed to forget all about his fall: Saffi's hand tightening about his as she spoke about the sweltering heat, Mina agreeing and echoing his question, the strange syllable-word, which Ruby had spoken so blithely. She might have been speaking about fish-fish or mush, from her tone.
"The different color over there is the sun coming up to give us light..." Ruby motioned upwards as she spoke.
He looked up and almost forgot to breathe.
He struggled to understand, mind caught by the sight above him. There were surely no words for what he saw, the changes in the shades, brighter than any he had ever seen. Of course things had different kinds of brightnesses - Saffi's eyes were different from the sticky mush, which was different from the disturbing brightness of blood - but these brightnesses were different. These brightnesses had their own glow in the darkness, so vivid they made his eyes hurt.
He couldn't draw his gaze away from the meld of brightnesses, which looked as though someone was trying to use the above as a forge.
And creating it all was Ruby's blazing sohnnn, a circle so bright it couldn't even be looked at as it rose from its hiding places.
"Ruby? What's it doing?" He had to whisper, his voice barely audible above the sound of wind and birdsong. Anything louder would sent the sohnn scurrying back into hiding.
A laugh. "The sun is rising, Leiard... now all the animals are going to come out and play, and we'll be able to see better! Sunrises are very pretty, too... see all the colors?"
"Ruby - what's ri-sssing? And kuhlurs?"
"Rising means it's coming up. And colors...Colors are what make the sky look different in some parts. It's what helps make everything else look different, too." She pointed upwards as she spoke, showing him the above - the sky.
He saw, and he noticed them in other places. The sohnn made them brighter, but they were already there.
She told them the names of the colors. Green for grahss and treees (and his shirt, he noticed). Yellow for sohnnn and some of the grahss. Blue for the sky; yellow, orange, pink, and red for the colors that streaked through the blue like salve or dissaw against skin- and even then, that still wasn't enough to describe all the colors for the sky. brown for treeees and mud.
He loved the taste of those new words and the brightness of their colors. Yehl-oh, the second syllable descending like the sun's hiding place. Blooo, as swift as the air that rushed past him. He wanted to stay outside forever, just looking at the colors.
But so many of the colors fled like startled fish-fish only a few moments later, blotted out by the sohnn's rising.
But he was going to remember them, and he was going to watch for them.
|Ringwe, 112 - Evening, hr 12|
Chapter 6: The Founding of Vale
Kain finished the last of the thatching of the roof of the newly built hall.
He stepped back to admire his work. Before him stood a long wooden hall made from hewn logs and dug partially in the ground. A thatched roof of tightly knit dried grass made a snug roof out of it, a small hole peeping out for the oven. He wrapped his arm around Ilysa as he admired it.
He thanked kindly the strange Anu whom had wandered and stayed with them for a short while. She did not plan to stay long, but Akila was of great help. Drew however slept more and more every day. His last words were a question of if they were going to continue to Nerfarka or not. After that he did not speak, Ilysa worried greatly daily.
This verdent land situated in the heat of the desert, fed by the two large mountains of ice to the west and the south, Kain had already named it. Vale is what it was named.
|Ringwe, 112 - Evening, hr 12|
Still I am pursued, Maiden must be furious with me... But I can't take this anymore, and I shall turn around confront her. Should I need to defend myself, Maern will make her decision the final one.
|Khelek, 113 - Sunrise, hr 5|
She remembered the way her mother flitted about the little house—the long black braids that whipped behind her, the smell of honey and potatoes and other good things to eat, the endless parade of clothes she sewed for her daughter's growing limbs. She remembered her father—a tall shadow bent lovingly over her and her mother, his pale hair gleaming against the darkness of the room, and the feather-soft lilt of his voice as he laughed his daughter's name: "Leuedai".
She remembered the strange visitor, small like her mother. She remembered the pleasant inflections of conversation that warped into icy threats she could not understand. The rush for the door. The muffled cries and thumps on the other side where her father was, and her mother covering her wet eyes.
She remembered her first steps in the open air: the deep red light the filled the world and sky, the strange creatures lumbering beneath it, her mother's haggard breath, and the stranger who chased them from the belly of the mountain. She remembered her sister as they clung to each other and wailed—as the stranger's axe turned dull in his hands and the rubble from the mountainside battered her mother's small body.
She remembered her doll—ragged and dusty and wet with her saliva, the one her mother had made—and she clung to it.
|Rosa, 113 - Sunrise, hr 5|
Ever since his fight with one, Zai has been fascinated by the crocodiles. He discovered during his time observing them that they too, were hunters. It was how they hunted, though, that interested him the most. Before, Zai thought that the hunter was always the one to approach his prey. The crocodiles instead waited for the prey to approach them, then attacked.
Zai spent a long time watching them. Though they were still just food to him, they taught him something new.
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