take a nine iron to their skull

Winter 18 Seasonal (Fighting)



Advanced Fighter (85)

1 Year
Extra large

Samhain 2022
02-04-2023, 10:15 PM

He was old enough now that he wasn't concerned about wandering away from the safety of the Armada. He was plenty big to begin with, and age had only made it more obvious that he was a force to be reckoned with. He shook off a deluge of saltwater from his thick, fluffy coat as he trudged onto the shores of the volcanic island near his home. The tawny youngster was approaching a year old, and he was ready to become his own man. Become a great warrior, and make his family proud. Perhaps he would take a page from his older brother's book and take up leadership of his own pack in the future!

Thick limbs propelled him up the slick, treacherous cliffs that ringed the island. Finding footholds was not an easy task, and the burn of his muscles was a welcome reward as he moved up and up and up. By the time he reached the summit of the craggy ring that protected the island, the sun was high in the sky. Warming his back and pulling the remaining seawater from his pelt. However, this found the boy's coat laden with salt and growing itchy. He fought off the urge to scratch as he picked his way along the edge of the cliffs to a wider embankment along the peaks where he could roll and writhe and clear the worst of it from his fur. From there, it was a much gentler descent down the other side of the cliffs and into the lush greenery of the thick forest below.

As he meandered along in the dappled shade, the stink of decay grew stronger. Lips curling in a scowl, he followed the stench to its source. Curiosity got the better of him, today. The buzz of insects accompanied the sight of an emaciated coyote, disembowelled many days ago. The remains of its innards strewn all around it, the meat nearly scraped away from all of the long bones. Its head was barely attached, jaws agape in a frozen scream of terror. What manner of violence brought the beast to such a gruesome end?

As if sensing his confusion, a chorus of yipping howls picked up all around him.

He lowered his tail over his hindquarters, ears flattening against his skull as a growl bubbled in his chest. It seemed like it had been just a few days since he'd helped his father clear out an encroaching pack, and to find another one so close felt very strange. Was the winter so hard on them on this island that they were resorting to cannibalism? Blond ears twitched to try and pinpoint the source of their calling, hoping to narrow down their numbers from the seemingly endless volume of howls. It was a well worn tactic, throwing their voices and creating confusion about the pack's size to strike fear into the hearts of their prey. He'd learned that from his father before they'd gone on that first trip. The pack was circling, he could see the shuddering of undergrowth as they moved through it. This was a waiting game, and he didn't want to show his hand before he knew what he was up against.

When they finally burst out of hiding, their numbers were far smaller than he could have anticipated. Hungry and rail thin, the gang of four coyotes rushed him at once. There was only a split second to act before they would tear into him, and so he knocked two aside with a heavy handed swipe of his paw. One struck another, and both tumbled to the ground. He could handle two starved coyotes for a moment, couldn't he? As he clamped his jaws around the neck of the nearest one, its cohort sunk its teeth into his foreleg and began to shake its head. The involuntary clench of his teeth against the scream of pain did the work of crushing the smaller canine's neck between them, and he could drop its limp carcass right away.

Bloodied fangs found purchase on either side of the thin spine of his attacker, a desperate attack that scraped a feeble rib cage and punctured vital organs with oversized canines. The coyote lurched away, skittering out of range to recoup. In a split second he was beset by the two previously stunned canids, who once again attacked as a single force. Finding holds on his thigh and elbow, the two tried to drag him off his feet and expose his belly. Well, if they wanted him to fall... the tactic had been particularly useful against his dainty sisters at one point, so it would probably serve in this instance just as well. All at once, he threw himself atop the two coyotes. The harsh crack of bone beneath his heft was followed up by a single yelp. The one tugging at the tender skin of his elbow had borne the brunt of his collapse, and he'd broken its neck beneath his shoulder as its head was forced backwards. Trapped beneath his hip and the cold ground, the winded and injured coyote scrambled free and back into the undergrowth. He noticed the way it limped, avoiding putting weight on its foreleg.

He'd emerged from the confrontation alive, but he was bloodied and bruised. Thin rivulets of hot blood streamed down three of his legs, staining his ivory wreathed limbs sanguine. A shuddering sigh passed his lips. It was time to get out of here before the surviving coyotes got any ideas about trying to pick him off after the adrenaline high faded.

With one last glance cast to the rotting corpse that had led him into the trap, he thanked whatever unseen forced had spared him from that terrible fate. The rigorous training that came with his family name had almost certainly saved him from a gruesome demise and subsequently serving as someone else's dinner. Flexing the sore muscles of his forelegs with a few careful rolls of his paws and stretching of his toes, he started back the way he came. Exploring the strange island would have to wait for another day, one where he might bring company. Perhaps Dread would enjoy the swim and climb that preceded the adventure, or maybe Andy would want to see the view from the precipice of the dormant volcano? Thoughts for later, once he was home and out of danger..

(WC: 1 068)

"Stratum Fatalis"
Stratum's horns are currently just little ivory nubbins, but his adult teeth are in now!

Sirius is allowed to invade any of his threads during his first year!