sonder winter 1710

between the devil and the deep blue sea

Thread Closed 

Mercenary

from Saora
age
4 years old
gender
Male
size
Extra Large
scent
mulled cider
supporting
Jacobite
home
Tir Na Nog
threadlog
pearlescent
writer
alz

”Run.”

Ewan Baird knew he was screwed. Months on the run had not made him clever. It filled him with a sick sense of pride that he’d outrun death and the law for this long, and it was that pride that had made him reckless. No more slinking along the back roads and hiding his face in the leaves. He lavished in life’s finest luxuries, convinced his ashen complexion and pale rosebud eyes were unassuming enough to allow him to skate by. And they had, for a spell. Unluckily for Ewan, death always reaps its rewards.

Jagged cliffs fell away on his left side, the black sands stretched endlessly to his right. Fresh from the Drunken Seagull, a pleasant buzz in his bones, the sands were hard to distinguish from the swirling sky and churning obsidian sea. All pretense of danger was, unwittingly, lost on him.

And danger came in its most lethal form.

Bastien had observed his quarry for a while now. Ewan had a special interest in the Drunken Seagull, likely allured by its promise of anonymity. He would get shitfaced drunk, try his paw at taking a special lady home each night, and then stumble out on his own hours later, visibly disgruntled. He’s the type to demand sex then turn around and call his dance partner a whore. It takes two to tango Ewan, Bast often found himself thinking. There were plenty of opportunities for him to close in on the wolf by now, but he was enjoying the free entertainment. He was running short on time, however, which brings us to now…

Thunderous baritones lashed the command. His quarry flinched and recoiled, his effort to remain balanced almost sending him careening over the edge. Ewan’s unfocused mind struggled to catch up to the present moment, and Bastien could have sworn he saw the gears turning from here. Realization began to blossom in his horrified expression, inherently aware that his demons were here at last to consume his soul. N-no. Please. I’ll- I can do whatever you need me to do. I-it doesn’t have to b-be like this. Ewan skipped over denial and anger and went straight to bargaining. Pathetic.

”I need you to run,” Bastien repeated with infuriating slowness. A predatory snarl crumpled his features, body poised to give chase. ”I’m going to count to three, Ewan, and you’re going to run for your life. Surprise me, and I'll make it quick. Ready? One… Two…”

Before the final word was uttered, his prey kicked into motion. Ewan, trapped between the devil and the deep blue sea, ran in the only direction he could, as behind him a discordant howl of pleasure split the night and heavy paws crashed against the sands in pursuit.

Art by Wisper
08-30-2023, 03:37 PM
#1

Ex-Enforcer

from
age
6 years old
gender
Male
size
Large
scent
Metal
supporting
Undecided
threadlog
N/A
It was said that when one reaches out into the darkness, one must mind that something inside of it didn’t reach out and grab them back. Savard had paid his price, just in consulting his age-old connections for information on a certain… problem he dealt with. And now, all those days later, he finds himself tracking down some wolf. Call it a personal favor of sorts, that he was called upon. The wolf was nasty, not unlike the other wolf he was tasked to take care of, although in this case, at least, Savard found himself appropriately compensated. But what was the assignment, exactly? Well, this wolf, Ewan Baird, he’d been quite the problem. If it’s one thing old-school Guilders are particular about, it is faithfulness to one’s word. And Ewan? Despite heavy investment to deliver on some illicit herbs and mushrooms, he apparently decided he was better off taking his client’s money, and selling off the mushrooms and herbs to other parties. Classic scam.

Of course, what made Ewan such a slimy one was that that wasn’t the least of the crimes. The poor wolf had made quite the spectacle of himself, his raucous playboy lifestyle. He seemed oddly proud of his antics, and was not one to keep his mouth shut. Laying low was such a change for him, something he surely must have loathed doing. He was stupid, in ever sense of the word. How it had taken wolves months to find him, with so many eyes on the prowl for his albino-like form, it must have been luck. Or… in cases like this, sometimes when everybody else is looking in places they’d expect a wolf to run, far far away, sometimes they end up next door. Nobody likes the thought of leaving him, leaving their life behind. Maybe Ewan wasn’t such an idiot after all. Well that, and besides making the mistake of drawing attention to himself. Now he was really screwed. Fortunately for Savard, he already had surmised that he hadn’t gone far, and now he had a head start on most, if not all, of the other sellswords out to get him.

But there were more than just amateurs out there. Coming into the Drunken Seagull for a brief moment, Savard had taken a quick look around, not wanting to overstay his welcome. He did not want to be recognized among his former associates, the lives he left behind, or at the very least tried to. To ask for their help would be problematic. To track his scent though, impossible. But just as he was about to leave, he spotted him, drunk, flirting, making a fool of himself. After that, and some hours of waiting outside the tavern, out he stumbled, out and away into the cliffsides, where he felt he would be safe. Savard kept his distance, tracking him, ensuring that he’d be the only one. After all, perhaps there’d be a reward in it for himself if Ewan had something to offer for a… lenient penance. It seemed easy at first, but as he stalked Ewan, the target appeared to grow weary, uneasy, as if he felt something was off. He hurried his pace, quicker and quicker. Savard did his best to follow suit, wondering if he had been made, or if something far worse lurked in Sussex’s darkness.

A shape, then, darted along the sands, swooping in on the target swiftly. Some distance away, Savard could not hear the words spoken, nor could he make out their scents. But no doubt, by the way the wolf was built, it was competition. Somebody had apparently had their eyes on Ser Baird as well. The two of them stood there in the darkness, the one wolf, much larger, motionless, while the other shaking in fear. Hell, Savard might have even seen Ewan piss himself in fear, until he suddenly took off. There a split moment, where the mercenary simply watched it happen, looking at the scampering drunk take off. The sadistic fuck, Savard thought to himself, he took great pleasure in this, didn’t he? There were many wolves that wanted Ewan. Some wanted him dead, while others preferred to have him still breathing when they eventually did make an example of him. Either way, though… the male knew there was a prize in this one, and a wolf that stood in his way. It was like the old days, wasn’t it? Like nothing had changed? All Savard knew was that if he let his target die, and if he let this opportunity slip away… it would be a financial sting. Good work was hard to come by for bad wolves.
08-30-2023, 05:08 PM
#2

Mercenary

from Saora
age
4 years old
gender
Male
size
Extra Large
scent
mulled cider
supporting
Jacobite
home
Tir Na Nog
threadlog
pearlescent
writer
alz

By all accounts, Ewan was stupid. Impossibly, immeasurably stupid. One might have been willing to give him a pass, but his confidence and audacity infuriated Bastien in every way. What kind of criminal just serves himself up on a silver platter? The ivory hunter might have meant his words if it wasn’t for Ewan’s maddening idiocy.

Poor, stupid Ewan. This wasn’t going to be a quick death for him.

To his credit Bastien did give the sniveling wimp a head start. It was only fair after all. Ewan was sculpted by his former lavish lifestyle, with the protruding gut and ineptitude to boot. His pursuer, on the other hand, was braided with muscle and honed by a lifetime's worth of running, fighting, and killing. Bastien's long, powerful strides could cover twice as much ground as Ewan's weak, stumbling gait and they both knew it.

Ebony jaws parted to savor the taste of his prey's terror that the wind offered him, wide red eyes wild with the thrill of the chase. A few bounds brought him within biting distance of that stubby tail, but he had a different goal. Lurching the front half of his body forward and towards the earth, Bastien's fangs would clasp around Ewan's heel and yank his hindleg out from under him. The man crashed in a spray of black sand. His free limb kicked out desperately, trying to find purchase in against a cheek or in an eyeball, anything that might give him a second chance at escape. Bastien, unflinchingly, released his leg, only to press a large alabaster foot in the man's chest to hold him in place. "You didn't surprise me Ewan," the hunter lamented, for all the world looking devastated by that fact. "But I'll let you in on a secret: It was never going to be quick anyway." A sick laugh of pleasure erupted from the confines of his broad chest, savage delight rife in the twisted planes of his face.

Something made his ears perk forward, intent. Someone else was nearby. "You're a popular guy, Ewan." Bastien foolishly believed he'd managed to outpace the other huntsmen that were surely on Ewan's trail. The fact that he would be forced into dealing with one of them soured his mood, but as the other wolf came into view, all signs of that annoyance disappeared. "Well, well, well," Bastien chuckled, "If it isn't Savard. Been a while, mate. Can't say I'm too pleased that we're running into each other like this. I'm not feeling too generous today." His grip on Ewan tightened, a possessive glint in his gaze. "This one's mine, mate."

Art by Wisper
08-31-2023, 12:50 PM
#3

Ex-Enforcer

from
age
6 years old
gender
Male
size
Large
scent
Metal
supporting
Undecided
threadlog
N/A
Despite the breakneck pace of the pursuit, Savard did well to keep up, all things considered. He had his stamina still, that much could be said. And to think, all those years out of practice, and he wouldn’t have been anywhere near his same old self! Well… there were definite limitations in him still, as age must inevitable do. And yet, despite everything he was managing to put into catching up to the pursuit, and despite wanting to believe to the contrary, the pursuer didn’t seem to even be trying all that hard. He seemed to effortless as he bared down on the pudgy wolf trying to stave of his own capture, or worse. The fact that he had lasted this long between the two of them was valiant. Soon enough, though, reality had caught up to him, as he was sent head over heels by the braided assailant, leaving him a tumbled mess in the sand. The fun was over, it would seem, and as he let out stammering whines of fear and pleas that fell on deaf ears, the other wolf took great pleasure in knowing what would come next.

As Savard stopped himself short of the tussle so as to observe, he noted that the more sadistic of the two wolves before him was… familiar, starting with that beastly frame. Now, in Savard’s line of work, most wolves were of impressive size. Some might even call Savard small, just by the way wolves are built these days. He was white-furred, his gait heavy yet swift, his form firm and pointed. And those braids he had, there were few wolves he knew who wore them. Of course, as Savard took these details in, it was that sinister, airy voice he had that gave it away for him, with all else being known. Savard wasn’t one to speak much about competitors as if he knew anything about who they were as wolves. But this one, the one holding his target in an embrace that promised only a bloody death, there was a wolf he could not forget. After all, he’d been there when everything went down, when everything changed. One may be able to forgive a wolf like that, but can never forget them all the same.

It’s a sick business that wolves such as Savard and Bastien are in. There are rules that are expected to be followed that are seemingly antithetical to their very nature, the most important one being not to take business personally. Emotions are natural to wolves, and yet, they are deadly to Guilders. Those at the top of the chain, they sold their soul to get where they got, have done things to those that would have called them friends that would horrify any other wolf. And yet… to those in the know, who lived the life they lived, it was just business, nothing personal. It seemed almost hypocritical sometimes, that loyalty and integrity were to be expected, even in instances of backstabbing and betrayal. But that was how it was. Back then, Bastien and Savard were similar in many respects, willing to do any job, any crime, for the right price. Then the former found his calling under the Crown, hoping to live a better life. Savard hadn’t paid much mind to the wolf other than that. There were stories that he was under the paw of some high and mighty colonel who was too afraid to get his cape dirty, and had the former Guilder do his work for him. Some said, though, that Bastien just couldn’t stay away from the Guild life, even if he tried.

Either way, it didn’t stop him from getting hired for a job that would change everything for the two of them. Malachi, Savard’s brother, was stupid enough to fall for a deal that was too good to be true. They had the goods, and the others had the cash. The only problem is, the other group didn’t intend on paying, and as soon as they saw that Malachi’s crew had what they wanted, they took them all out. Almost all of them, because the ones that survived, they got taken off the street. Whether that was their intentions, or if that was the result of an old friend looking out for Savard, that remained to be said. It didn’t matter, what did was that Savard could do his best to remember that this was all just a business, but it couldn’t put everything that had happened in the past. He had gotten over it long ago, but he hadn’t forgotten any of it.

It didn’t take long for Savard to give himself away, and as his old associate taunted his fresh catch, he took a break to give greetings, a kind gesture to say the least. Of course… he also went on to make sure Savard knew that he would not be negotiating, that the wolf before them was his alone. It amused Savard, as he strode forth nonchalantly, not so much that he was prepared to give up on his prize so easily, but that this was only the beginning of their negotiations. “Bastien,” Savard said cordially, with a nod of his head as he came forward, “been a while.” Savard took a moment to eye Ewan, his body tremoring in fear. He was scared shitless… well at the very least pissless. The odor in that moment was unmistakeable. Regardless, Savard hadn’t come all that way just to turn around, even if it were a wolf he knew. Especially, in fact. “Then we’ve got a problem. Any other wolf and I’d let you have him, no questions asked,” he continued, his form still relaxed, despite the intensity of his eyes, “but Ewan’s been made worth my while by some folks who want him… alive. I hope you see our conundrum here, Bastien.”
09-07-2023, 02:55 PM
#4

from
age
years old
gender
Non-Conforming
size
Extra Small
scent
supporting
threadlog
encounters
writer
Patrol
A whole patrol walks by and the soldiers stop. When they notice you, two approach you. One is a tall wolf with bright blue eyes and the other is of similar height to you. "Why are you here? And where is your commanding officer?" asks the tall one.


This event affects only WANTED wolves. To try and persuade them and/or engage in a fight with them, please post in #updates.
09-07-2023, 02:55 PM
#5

Mercenary

from Saora
age
4 years old
gender
Male
size
Extra Large
scent
mulled cider
supporting
Jacobite
home
Tir Na Nog
threadlog
pearlescent
writer
alz

Savard refuted his declaration on the grounds that someone was willing to pay a pretty penny for poor pissy Ewan here. Bastien had a good guess of who his clients were as he'd been approached with a similar offer that was swiftly declined. He was no longer aligned with the army; if they wanted criminals apprehended, he'd said, then they should take their business elsewhere. Justice, in his opinion, needed to be permanent for him to feel the satisfaction from it.

"I see how that presents a problem for you, but I fail to see how it affects me. Possession is nine-tenths of the law after all, mate." Bastien's response was underscored by apathetic boredom. Savard knew the rules the same as he did. "Unless you want to make it interesting... for old time's sake? Ewan here proved to be rather dull, but a bit of excitement might put me in a better mood... incline me to negotiate. What do you say, Savvy?"

Savard never struck him as the type to willfully fight if he could avoid it. There was only one time he could recall seeing the man in action, back in the days when he'd been a cog in the machine. His efforts hadn't altered the natural course of history, but it had earned him Bastien's notice and respect, leading to their longlasting rivalry that brought them both here in this moment. The quiet intensity of Savard's amber gaze remained unchanged as well.

Art by Wisper
09-11-2023, 08:59 PM
#6

Ex-Enforcer

from
age
6 years old
gender
Male
size
Large
scent
Metal
supporting
Undecided
threadlog
N/A
So much for making it easy. As Savard made it clear that his employer was interested in getting poor Ewan alive, who might it be said was a sniveling, confused wreck of the wolf as two wolves parlayed over his life. Bastien was not having any of Savard’s offer, not that it benefitted him. He was right, after all, that he had caught Ewan first, and had full control over him. To give him up would have been foolish, especially since it did not benefit him. Nobody did anything for free, not that charity was a good way to live. Those in the Guild, they were realists in that way, in that any deed one does, they always expect something in return. Their price is always exacted, in one way or another. And Bastien’s? He wanted a price that Savard could never hope to repay.

He was right about Bastien, how much he held back in trying to catch Ewan. He seemed to have found the affair dull, and wanted something more fulfilling. After all, what does a brute of his kind know? All those years in the army, and it seems that certain qualities had imprinted on him. He might claim he was that way all along, and perhaps he was right, but in Savard’s limited but recent experience with such wolves, they all had similarities in those regards. Deep down, Savard knew what it was that he was asking. Of course, as any true Guilder might, why place a wager if one knows they won’t win it? But then again, perhaps he could have some surprises to him still. He wanted to hear him say it, word for word. Deep down, after all, a part of Savard he suppressed wanted so badly to take the wolf up on his offer, though he knew his chances were slim. For old time’s sake, indeed.

“If you are to be proposing what you seem to be,” Savard said, impatience in his tone, as he eyed the target once more, “you’ll find it won’t be so interesting. Seems to me it’s all you know how to do, after all. If you want excitement in your life… have you considered going to a brothel?” From what little he knew of Bastien, he knew he had quite the reputation. It took one to know one, of course. And yet, here they both were, two wolves who walked their own, similar paths In life, preparing to fight over dinner scraps. At least Savard had his manners. “How about you, Ewan,” Savard said, his attention snapping to the prone wolf, “you got a preference? Alive or dead? Bastien didn’t seem to want to ask you.” Well, alive for now at least. The wolves who had the contract out on him, they wanted the fun all for themselves. Hell, they might even teach Bastien what ‘interesting’ really means, in the sense that he uses it. Unfortunately for Savard, all Ewan could manage in reply was a scared whine of indecision.
09-12-2023, 03:41 PM
#7

Mercenary

from Saora
age
4 years old
gender
Male
size
Extra Large
scent
mulled cider
supporting
Jacobite
home
Tir Na Nog
threadlog
pearlescent
writer
alz

Seems to me it's all you know how to do. Savard taunted him, suggesting he should get his kicks from a brothel instead. Bastien maintained control of his features, though his skin wrinkled around his nose, a snarl stifled before it could emerge. Had this been any other wolf in front of him, he would have allowed his rage to take hold of him, but Savard was one of few he considered... not a friend, no, but an ally of sorts. The words infuriated him because he felt the truth in them and because they meant that he had not changed. That was not Savard's fault; it was his own, and for all of his faults, at least Bastien could recognize and accept that.

So instead of wrath, he laughed, brimming with playful malice. "If that's how you want to settle this instead, why don't you turn around? I'll let you have him if you can last longer than ten seconds. Aw, don't be coy," he said when the former mercenary turned his attention to Ewan, who whined hoarsely. It was hard to get any words out when your chest is imploding, he supposed.

None of them were going to yield, that much was clear. Maybe it was because he'd spent over a month in the Mainlands tracking Ewan and waiting for an opportune moment to strike, the unclimactic chase, or just because he liked Savard more than he did other wolves - whatever the reason, Bastien made the decision for all three of them to get a bit more of a thrill out of this situation. "Alrighty, Sav, if you want him bad enough, you're going to have to catch him. I hope you're as fast as you used to be." A heavy white paw lifted, releasing the coward. Fangs met flesh, slashing a warning into Ewan's flank: Run, or I'll kill you right now. Bastien smirked at Savard. "I'll even give you a headstart. Better get going, mate."

Art by Wisper
09-17-2023, 03:38 PM
#8

Ex-Enforcer

from
age
6 years old
gender
Male
size
Large
scent
Metal
supporting
Undecided
threadlog
N/A
“I can last a lot longer than ten seconds, asshole,” Savard chirped in response, his tone a flat baritone compared to his cocky adversary, “and no need for a headstart.” Savard knew what it was like to boast. He was like that, but now, seeing how it made him feel, he couldn’t help but still have his own regrets. He was confident in himself to see the job through, that should have been enough. But wolves these days, they abided by different standards than he did, for better and for worse. It’s the type of wolf that Bastien was, and despite giving him every opportunity to the contrary, it was clear that he wanted a fight. Not one of them was willing to give up on the contract. But what Savard didn’t want Bastien to know, and was arguably his secret weapon, was that while Bastien did it because he was a cocky and competitive soul, Savard needed the reward money a lot more than he did.

With Ewan going off in a spring, the two mercenaries raced after him in sport. Knocking off the rust, and perhaps helped by Bas’ initial interest in killing Ewan rather than himself, Savard had amply time to stay caught up. It was then that they turned to blows, two heavyweights, two titans, trading blow for blow. They got so caught up in it, that Ewan nearly slipped away, though he was wounded and panicked enough to not get far. What started as nips to the brute’s thigh, and a kick to his own face in return, things grew more and more desperate. Something deep inside of Savard had been awoken, and he instantly ramped his game up, delivering crushing bites to the brute’s side, his thigh, his throat. He tried to have there be some sort of peaceful resolve to it… but what if part of Savard broke his own rule? What if… this was really personal?

But the assassin wouldn’t give up easily, bending Savard’s frame with relative ease given his large frame, and delivering a deep puncture into his ear, partially tearing it. Savard responded with more bites, including a vicious one to his shoulder. By the end, they were both exhausted, two wolves at the end of their ropes, each one of them giving their all, for just one wolf. Was it worth it? Was any of it really worth it? Is affirmation of its worth what they told themselves to justify any of it? Savard was resilient, and Bas, arrogant. With each of them down to their last ounce of strength, Savard found his neck bent back, strained painfully. But in his vice, he sued his momentum to get on top of his adversary, slamming him forcefully to the sand with everything he had, flipping him over, and diving into his jugular. Well, he stopped short, at least, knowing that for the first time in a while, he had won. He need not remind himself, nor tell Bas especially, the name of the wolf that taught him that move.

Accepting his defeat with grace, Bastien gave the target up, though by now he was some distance away, and Savard was quite injured. It wouldn’t matter, because at that moment, Savard felt that part of himself he regretted to show, especially to himself. Despite the kindness in Bas’ voice, Savard seemed cold and distant, turning away from his defeated friend as he limped towards the target. It was only after taking a few steps, did he offer any sort of words. “Drinks are on you. Be seeing you,” he seemingly commanded, continuing on after the fleeing Ewan. Further and further away he got, and the oaf felt that he had a chance of escaping. Not what Savard had come so far, done what he had done. How could there be any other result, than what he had promised himself to do?

Some time later…

Hours had passed, several in fact. He was worn out, weary, his wounds from earlier in the day surely were left untreated, the blood all but dried. Still, some of his wounds required treatment. His muscles ached, his eyes fluttered between open and closed, and he still walked with a limp from the fight. And Ewan? He put up a fight, he truly did. But what he set out to do, he did. Thankfully, the Sando family had people in Sussex that were close, and happily took in Ewan for Savard, giving him his rightful pay in return. What happened to the wolf after that, whether his death would come that night, or many from then, was not any of the male’s business. What was done, was done. And as he held the bag of Renown in his paw, just as he had done hundreds of times before, so much so that he knew the weight of his pay just by how it felt, was he proud of himself? Did he feel like a victor? Ewan was scum, but did any wolf deserve what he had done? At least he got his fucking Renown, and the Sandos their eventual corpse.

With his duty fulfilled, it dawned on Savard that he had forgotten all about his appointment with Bastien, if he had even agreed to it. Most arrogant pricks wouldn’t dare have shown their faces in the Drunken Seagull after a loss. And yet… they both needed some refreshment. Neither one had anything to be especially proud of, after all. With a limp, Savard made his way back eventually to the Drunken Seagull, entering the establishment as inconspicuously as a ragged, blood-stained wolf could be. But then again, it was that kind of place, and he knew a wolf or two. Whether Bas was there or not, perhaps it made no difference, for he was drinking his share regardless.
09-19-2023, 05:07 PM
#9

Mercenary

from Saora
age
4 years old
gender
Male
size
Extra Large
scent
mulled cider
supporting
Jacobite
home
Tir Na Nog
threadlog
pearlescent
writer
alz

He may have been reduced to a glorified pincushion after the brawl with Savard, but Bastien was nothing if not a good sport. If it were a lesser man, perhaps defeat would make him cagey. Perhaps it was the shared respect between them that softened the blow. Whatever the reason he was in rather high spirits despite the various places of his body that were still throbbing.

He sidled right up to the bar and propped himself up on it, tail swaying to the sound of drunken flirtations, rancorous laughter, and croons of appreciation. A throng of wolves gathered around to watch and whistle at the promiscuous ladies dancing on the tabletops. Other than to inspect them for a familiar face, they failed to ensnare Bastien's attention for very long and soon he had turned back to the mug of mead deposited in front of him.

Eventually, another presence joined him. Bast, two drinks closer to being positively fluthered, sneered at Savard. "I hate to say it, mate, but you're starting to look your age." The stiffness in his movements was not lost on the arctic man, who would feel guilty if he wasn't so adrenalized still. He had the decency to flag down the bartender with a lofty paw, fully intending to uphold the deal thrust upon him in the moments before Savard had taken off in chase of Ewan. I wonder how he's doing, he thought with aimless amusement.

Art by Wisper
09-25-2023, 10:00 AM
#10
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