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The Endless Hunt, Season 3: "Snakes! Why Did It Have to Be Snakes?"

Discussion in 'Machiavel: Ambition' started by Ravana, Jun 13, 2012.

  1. Ravana

    Ravana Istar

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    [Good luck with that. But it's good drama. ;) ]

    -

    Silver, Tusk, and Cap'n Rainbow

    Well, the snake got away, but the bear sure didn't. It lies sprawled on the ground in front of the hunters, who set to removing its hide.

    In the process, Tusk makes a discovery that surprises him–surprises both of them, once he points it out. It looks like they weren't the only run-in the bear has had recently. A pair of ragged furrows runs from its belly across one hind leg. They start out fairly shallow, but go as much as two inches deep, before trailing off again on its haunches, some four feet total. Each of the parallel lines is around an inch wide. Tusk can just about fit his palm between them… and his hands aren't exactly small.

    Tusk analyzes the marks. "Too far apart to be claws, unless it was another bear, or maybe a cat, missing its center two. Too wide for claws, anyway. Too rough for a weapon: those are tearing wounds, not cuts. Can't think of anything that would leave a bite like that… not without ripping its teeth out of its jaws."

    This is Tusk's territory, and his specialty: Silver just nods. She may have spent a fair amount of time in the wilderness, but she can't think what might have done this to a bear this size either.

    "I can tell you two more things," he continues. He dabs at the edge of a wound. His finger comes away with coagulated blood clinging to it. "One: this is recent."

    He stands up.

    Silver prompts: "And two?"

    "Two," he says, gazing all around, "I can't imagine anything doing this to a bear in a fight and not causing it any other wounds."

    He looks down at her. "Not unless the bear got this while running away."

    Silver continues skinning the bear. "Guess you were right about bigger game here, huh?"

    "I guess."

    -

    [to be continued…]
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Oct 11, 2017
  2. Legendary Sidekick

    Legendary Sidekick The HAM'ster Moderator

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    Tusk

    I haven't forgotten about everything my annoying parrot echoed about Bouldergut, but I'm sure he can take care of himself. Heck, he might even be hunting whatever beast wounded that bear.

    As for my huntress buddy here...

    "If you ever tell me you fight better when you're drunk, I'll actually believe you." I finally remove my sword from its sheath. "But don't take offense if I insist on being more of a help next time."

    Of course, Silver's curious about the blade. The scabbard is padded so I can rest my weapon on my shoulder when I'm walking around. I'm not much taller than Silver, so it's not like I can sheathe this thing on my back without getting hung up. Aside from my master, I'm not sure I've seen a man who can.

    "What kind of a sword is that?" she finally asks.

    "The first that Bouldergut ever forged! He gave it to me when I was twelve. Maybe he thought I'd be taller, but just lugging this thing all over creation made me strong enough to swing it." There's no good way to tell her, so I just tell her, "He called it Claymost. It's like a claymore, only bigger. I hear he's better at naming weapons than he used to be."



    (Tusk is happy to remain in the wilderness in search of Bouldergut or big game--preferably both. But he is willing to let Silver make the decision, as long as she speaks coherently so he's relatively sure it's not the booze talking.)
     
  3. Sheilawisz

    Sheilawisz Queen of Titania Moderator

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    Silver, Tusk and Captain Rainbow

    Silver decided to keep trying to find interesting snakes, big game to hunt or maybe find Bouldergut, so both of them, together with Captain Rainbow, began to travel deeper into the forests and the hills always keeping a mental map to go back and return to the Caravan and the others.

    They were carrying enough of the bear's hide to make two large and excellent coats, but not all of it, since it was too heavy and the strong smell could alert the possible prey. They washed the blood from their weapons and their hands with water from a little lake, and soon Silver had started to drink more wine (at least, it smelled like wine to Tusk!) from a leather canteen that she always carried around...

    "The trees are beautiful here" Silver whispered suddenly, while Tusk was walking a few yards ahead- "They are moving all around me... What is that? What are they trying to tell me?"

    "What did you say?" Tusk asked, looking back at her with a curious expression on his face.

    "Tusk, the stars are sparkling tonight..."

    Silver then lied down and curled between the rocks and the wild grass with a dreamy look in her large blue eyes, just beside a tree, and then she quickly fell asleep...

    Tusk was starting to understand why Silver had been expelled from her woodcutter job back at the forests that she called home.
     
    Last edited: Jul 16, 2012
  4. Ravana

    Ravana Istar

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    Silver, Tusk and Cap'n… crunch?

    …especially since it isn't even dark yet. Though looking up at the sunlight twinkling through the leaves, Tusk could see where one might get the impression.

    Looks like it's break time.…

    Crunch.

    "What was that?"

    "Raawk? Crunch!"

    "I know it was a crunch. What made the crunch?"

    "Raawk? You're asking me? I just work here, boss!"

    Oh, great, Tusk thinks: Silver's passed out, something's going

    CRUNCH.

    out there, and now my parrot is sassing me. He's had better days.

    CrunchCRASHrustlerustlecreeaKERRRUNCH!

    Snort.

    "Snort?"

    "Raawk? Shazbot!"

    "No, 'snort,' you stu—"

    CRUNCH.

    "Raawaakakaak!" The Cap'n departs Tusk's arm, leaving behind a token of her affection.

    Ignoring the bird—which, at the moment, seems only prudent—Tusk turns toward the approaching noises…

    Snort!

    …and stares straight at the biggest slab of bacon he's ever imagined.

    Bony ridges run up its snout and along the crest of its skull, others arc over its eyes, rough ends resembling stout, truncated horns. Its shoulders are as far off the ground as Tusk's are. Its hide bristles even more than the hair on his neck is trying to right now. Vicious ivory dirks curve upward from its mouth—in pairs, with downward-curving ones between. Just about far enough apart that he could put his palm between them, he figures… glancing down at the bearskin-encumbered form of his companion.

    A Crashing Boar! But I thought they were extinct.…

    Snort. The monster shakes its head, in the process dislodging a large chunk of shrubbery it had clearly found not worth circumventing. SqueeEAL!

    Hot damn, thinks Tusk.



    Tusk: you dream of moments like this. See if you can do any better than the bear did. Ideally, without getting Silver trampled in the bargain.

    Silver: snore.

    Cap'n Rainbow: <from somewhere high up in the trees> "Raawk? Snore!"
     
    Last edited: Jul 20, 2012
  5. Legendary Sidekick

    Legendary Sidekick The HAM'ster Moderator

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    Tusk (Silver's POV)

    Silver looks up at Tusk. He is close.

    "Wh... what's going on?"

    The forest above seems to be... moving.

    Silver blacks out.


    * * *


    She wakes up again.

    Tusk is close and breathing heavily.

    She feels his arms around her body.

    *SLAP*

    "Tusk, what the hell...?"

    Tusk doesn't respond. He keeps... running. Carrying Silver while... running!

    Oh... so he wasn't trying to...

    Silver blacks out again.

    "I'm tired of running," a voice echoes.


    * * *


    *SHINK*

    Silver wakes up to see the tip of a sword embedded in the tree she finds herself propped up against.

    The double image of Tusk is planted in a strong stance, but the Tusk twins keep moving and turning transparent.

    Two large, reddish brown specters charge toward him and form together to become a four-tusked beast. Using the better half of his Claymost, Tusk strikes.

    The beast squeals in pain, but manages to bash Tusk with its one remaining tusk. It fails to skewer the man, but is successful at disarming him. Without thinking, Tusk grabs the beast by its snout. What he does next is something even that big guy Bouldergut wouldn't be able to do--Silver's sure of that--though she's not really sure what Tusk did other than slam a wild creature to one side with his bare hands.

    But she catches his next attack. Tusk grabs the tusk that he managed to sever from the boar and dives onto the no-longer-stunned creature, jamming its own severed tusk into its eye. Tusk quickly stomps the butt end of the tusk with the heel of his boot, puncturing its brain and putting the beast out of its misery.

    Tusk approaches Silver. Both of him. Her double vision is back.

    "Did you see that? No, of course not... I was carrying you and running away and you slept like a log. I know you caught the end of the battle, but you missed the best part! I'll tell you abou--"


    * * *


    "Wake up, Silver! I made breakfast!"




    PS- Sorry I took so long to reply. I was away for the weekend, and spent a lot of my free time this week doing some stuff for this site. That said, I plan to stick out the hunt until the end of the season! (Though it's likely I'll only post once or twice a week.)
     
  6. Sheilawisz

    Sheilawisz Queen of Titania Moderator

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    Silver and Tusk

    The forest had finally stopped swirling all around Silver, she could hear Tusk's voice again, the smell of breakfast was great and he was visible as a ghostly, somewhat blurred figure a few steps from her. Silver stood up staggering, and then the inevitable happened at last...

    Silver dashed towards the nearby bushes and she started to throw up, the consequence of her heavy wine abuse that she was so familiar with since she was thirteen!

    "You have been passed out for very long" Tusk said, beside Silver and trying to help her to recover- "And you slapped me. I am sorry, maybe you thought that I was trying to do something else."

    "Tusk, that was the second time that you have saved my life..." Silver said, displaying a soft smile as her body, at last, finished throwing out the poison- "Saying thank you is not enough, but... Thank you. I am in debt with you, a debt that I shall pay one way or another when the time comes."

    Tusk was sure that Silver was more than capable of saving his life if the occasion showed up, and both of them were very happy to be friends in this great adventure.

    "Come, I made breakfast."

    Silver and Tusk sat under a tree to enjoy the roasted boar, rabbit and wild blueberries. They had hunted a bear and those unnaturally large boars, which was already a good Hunt even if they had not caught that mysterious green snake. What should they do now?

    "Tusk, Sigrelyn and the others must be worried for us." Silver commented as they finished breakfast- "We should go back to the Caravan now, what do you think?"

    "That's a good idea." Tusk said, putting out the fire- "We already have enough Hunt to carry back!"

    Then Silver, Tusk and Captain Rainbow (who kept shrieking Raaawk!! Snore!! Throwing up!! gathered the bear's hide, what they could take of the boars and departed on their travel back to the Caravan...
     
  7. Legendary Sidekick

    Legendary Sidekick The HAM'ster Moderator

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    Tusk sees lots of hoof prints and ruts.

    He asks Silver, "Say... where is the caravan? Is the hunt over?"

    Silver has a question of her own. "Why is my basket empty?"

    "AAAAH!" Tusk screams, "Trouser snakes are a bad idea!"

    Silver would offer to help Tusk frantically fling snakes out of his pants, but she's pretty sure that would only make the situation more awkward.
     
  8. Sheilawisz

    Sheilawisz Queen of Titania Moderator

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    Silver and Tusk

    "Wait!" Silver screamed, trying to capture the fleeing snakes and put them back in her basket- "Tusk, don't kill them! Any of these could be a treasure for Prince Heverik!"

    Silver could see many different species of snakes, some of them looking dangerous, others not really but she could not be sure. Tusk was still getting them all out of his pants, and in the end, when Silver had finished capturing them all (and decapitating with her Longsword one with very long fangs that tried to bite Tusk!) both friends proceeded to follow the hoove prints that seemed to follow a path towards the Northwest.

    "We were hunting away for too long" Tusk said- "Sigrelyn and Jade must be worried."

    "I promise... I will never drink like that again!" Silver replied, and soon they entered a region with tall, thorny bushes and jagged rocks all around them- "I just hope that Sigrelyn will not be mad at us."

    Meanwhile, Cap'n Rainbow was flying around them and capturing insects from the thorny bushes around them, shrieking: Raaawk! Caravan! Snaaaakes!!.

    "Yeah, snakes, we know Cap'n!" Tusk yelled at the bird- "Silver, do you reckon they are too far?"

    Then, Silver could get a glimpse of a most unusual, fluorescent green snake that was sliding away and hiding into the thorny bushes in that very moment...

    "Tusk, look at that!"

    The snake was fast, but Silver was even faster: She dashed so fast and caught the snake by the tail, pulling it out of its hiding place and right into her basket. It was about four feet long, its eyes were crystal-like and deep blue and it featured very long and sharp-looking fangs.

    "It looks dangerous, that one." Tusk said, and they kept walking following the hoove prints...

    Silver and Tusk walked all day, just stopping sometimes to rest and drink water... and that night, after reaching a place that looked like a grassy field, they could see the Caravan at last and a woman appeared out of the shadows illuminated by the fire of her torch.

    "Where the heck have you been?" Sigrelyn asked, walking towards Silver and Tusk...
     
    Last edited: Aug 10, 2012
  9. Legendary Sidekick

    Legendary Sidekick The HAM'ster Moderator

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    Tusk replied, "Hunting snakes for the prince, of course."

    Silver handed Sigrelyn the basket, but Heverik (who Tusk somehow failed to notice despite his flamboyant outfit fitted with several protruding elephant tusks, bamboo chutes, foot-long sausages, and other phallic objects) yanked the basket away.

    "My outfit is complete!" he shouted triumphantly. Three seconds later, he shouted again. Less triumphantly.

    * * *

    Jade rubbed Silver's shoulders, but not hard enough to stop the tears. Tusk was equally inconsolable, but instead of his eyes running nonstop, it was his mouth.

    "No one said anything about having to defang the snakes! What do I look like? A snake dentist?"
     
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  10. Sheilawisz

    Sheilawisz Queen of Titania Moderator

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    Sigrelyn healed Prince Heverik's injuries from the snake bites that night, Silver and Tusk tried to sleep as best as they could and the following morning the Caravan kept traveling into far and unexplored lands.

    Heverik confirmed that the fluorescent green snake was indeed a valuable species, particularly rare and difficult to catch, and after many days of travel and encounters with dangerous bears and huge wolf-like monsters, the Caravan arrived at a region that seemed to be a vast, dark forest deep in a valley between snowy mountains.

    Silver and Jade explored until they found the perfect clear in the forest to build a permanent campsite, near a crystalline lake and other sources of safe water. Every night they would hear the wolves howling somewhere in the forest and up in the mountains, and several times Tusk was forced to fight off a few wolves that dared to attack the Caravan.

    Sigrelyn was drawing maps to officially chart the lands that they were exploring, and meanwhile Prince Heverik continued to offer rewards to any member of the Caravan that captured a rare and potentially valuable snake. With time, the Hunters and Huntresses managed to collect enough snakes to keep Heverik satisfied and busy for many months to come... and so, the Caravan would soon depart in their final travel back home.

    One day, an enormous snake came from the deepest and darkest part of the valley: It was at least sixteen yards long, with a brown and black body and terrible long fangs, and by the time that Sigrelyn saw it the monster was already wreaking havoc in the Caravan as it tried to hunt down Jade and Tusk.

    Silver and Sigrelyn managed to inflict enough arrow and sword wounds on the monster to make it retreat, and that night Prince Heverik decided that it was time to return home with his already large enough treasure of rare and valuable snakes.

    It was a pleasant journey, much easier than the first...

    Silver Whitestar said farewell to her new friends, promising to visit them often, and then she returned back to the forests that she called home. There she built a modest castle with the money that she had earned in her adventure, also growing a large vineyard to produce her own wines from then on.

    Jade and Tusk would visit her often in her castle, hoping that one day they would have another adventure together...
     
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