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[ P ] Crown of Thorns

Arran Kinnaird
Male <1 Highlander Commonwealth N/A
Undecided

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Little Lion Man
posted 12-10-2021, 08:45 PM - Word count:
#1



Little Lion Man
The weight of the world sat heavily upon ivory shoulders. The breadth of the horizon with its rising sun felt both cleansing and oppressive. Its warmth, its golden glow bathing the young man. A russet crown perched upon his brow in much the same vain. For it was a new day but with it came new expectations.

The thoughts of which had the little lion man padding with purpose to the south. Each step away from the den, away from home, giving him strength. Free from the oppression of said expectations. Free to be whomever he wanted to be. Free to be… him.

Arran pauses as his small paw falls perfectly within that of a larger worn print. He cocks his head inquisitively before leaning to give it a small sniff. Instinctively his pennant begins to swing excitedly. Father. A simple whispered word. It gives him a renewed sense of purpose as well as bravado. Orlaith and Gwyn swore he would lose his way but alas he was following their father’s route! He simply hoped he could intercept him before mother inevitably came searching for him.

An excited yip of a bark followed by a short rueful howl before the little lion man was on his way once more. The journey felt long to inexperienced legs but rather than quit, Arran pushed forward. Tongue now lolling forth from his juvenile maw. He was already a student to this life, focused on honing his skills to obtain his goals. Each step meant strengthened muscles, practiced senses. He would be a soldier yet.

It felt like he had traveled miles but the slowly rising sun told him otherwise. So he pushed forward until he could no longer fathom the thought of continued movement. Until all the recognizable scents of home were stolen by the summer wind. It was not safe and yet he was unafraid.

Arran found the relics of a structure long lost to time, the ones his father had oft spoke about it marking his path back to the lowlands. There nestled betwixt the conifers stood the crumbling monolith. To a pup, it reached to the heavens thus marking the spot as holy, and in some ways it was, at least to him. For it was here that father would return to prodigal son.

The little lion man found an appropriate throne to wait. A broken piece of the whole that towered above. A miniature version in form and function. So too was the young wolf who sat perched upon it waiting expectantly for his father. An emerald eyed sentry scanning the wood for the cerulean orbs of a heroic soldier returning just for him.



@Baelfire

Male 4 Lowlander Imperial Army Soldier
Royalist

106

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Large • prarie grass



posted 12-22-2021, 05:32 PM - Word count:
#2

baelfire
The sun was slowly rising as he made his way north, heading back home from his lengthy patrol. It had led him down to the Lowlands, but he'd not gone as far as Melrose before turning and heading back home. He hadn't run into anything along the way, which was good, but also boring. He drew in a breath of fresh air as he saw the distant trees that surrouned Perth in the far distance. Without a word, he began to run.

With the wind at his back, he felt like he was soaring over the plains that borded the Highland forest he called home, urging him there faster than he thought possible.

He almost didn't notice young Arran waiting for him atop one of the crumbled structures that marked the border between the two worlds. His ears flicked and he turned his head, grinding to a stop and letting his tongue lull from his parted jaws. He was surprised the young boy had made it all the way out here safely; and a little worried. His gaze drifted about, but he didn't see Sorcha or his siblings so he assumed Arran had come all this way on his own. A mixture of pride and fear swirled within him as he approached the his son. "How long have you been waiting?" he asked, smiling down at the boy as he raised a paw to rest it atop his head breifly before letting it slide and drop back down to the earth.

"You know you shouldn't come out here alone yet... I worry." And what if something had happened? His gut twisted but he tried to shake it off. Nothing had happened and Arran was fine. He was getting older and soon he'd be wandering even further than this. Baelfire knew he couldn't keep them all close to home forever, as much as he might want to.
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Arran Kinnaird
Male <1 Highlander Commonwealth N/A
Undecided

7

posts
55.00

renown
Medium • Balsalm & Cedar


Little Lion Man
posted 12-27-2021, 07:47 PM - Word count:
#3



Little Lion Man
The rising sun now bathed Perth in a white light as it mounted the sky. It’s pure glittering light filtering through the tree tops to provide a dappling design on the forest floor. A myriad of complex organic shapes that took on a life of their own when the wind moved the boughs above. The beauty of the moving light and shadow play enraptured the small sentry, still so easily distracted.

A russet crown dipped then cocked in bemusement as the little lion man tried to predict the scintillating patterns upon the ground. For as much as there seemed to be a predictable ebb and flow, so too did it appear completely random. The passage of time seemed to slow as the pup’s concentration grew, as emerald eyes fixated on the similar hued grass. As Arran tried to interpret the movements before him in comparison to the movement of himself.

The summer breeze would blow lazily through the boughs above and wildly across the thin blades below. All the while, tracing mesmerizing circular patterns through his ivory pelt. What was the connection here? How did the wind, the sun, the shadow, the trees, the ground all weave together so intricately without obvious seams?

Arran’s nares twitched reflectively as he turned his crown upward towards the heavens, towards the unthinkably high monolith that threatened to puncture the sky above. It was then, that the truest light shone, like a streaming arrow shot straight from the sun or perhaps being summoned back above instead. It was no more than a blur but luckily it stopped in its pilgrimage home to grace the boy with its purity.

“Father!”

The patchwork of shadow and light ceased as the center of the boy’s universe stopped to assess the little lion man. How did father harness the wind, the sun, and all else like that? It was a question to be pondered later as joy overtook Arran instead, who was barely able to contain it within his slightly wriggling frame. Although he dared not move.

“I... I dunno… I’d wait all day for you though!”

The words barely escaped his maw when father’s large ivory paw momentarily baptized the boy’s russet crown. An action that Arran had longed to feel again even after it had just occurred. Yet he would not say so, especially not as father warned him of his solo journey to greet him at the edge of the woods of Perth.

“But a soldier has to learn how to do things alone…”

Arran’s russet crown furrowed as he stated his reason for traveling so far and so alone. For he could not fathom his father not understanding such a thing. After all, it was him that Arran always tried to emulate. It was him that the little lion man now looked to, as he had just looked to the monolith, to the sun. Things so much greater than he.




@Baelfire

Male 4 Lowlander Imperial Army Soldier
Royalist

106

posts
122.00

renown
Large • prarie grass



posted 01-10-2022, 04:32 PM - Word count:
#4

baelfire
While he knew he was supposed to show disappointment that Arran had done something dangerous, he couldn't help but feel pride. His son was already showing them all that he was brave and that could make for a good soldier-- if Sorcha permitted it, of course. He would he honored to have even one of his children follow in his pawsteps, and thus his father's pawsteps... a line of soldiers, born and bred to uphold the law of Rionnach. He smied, a glimmer of hope in his single eye as he peered down at his son.

His throat tightened with emotion at Arran's comments, then, and he nodded his head. "That they do, my boy." he said, bending to bump him on his shoulder.

"We just wouldn't want to frighten your mother, now, would we?" he said, knowing full well the boy had likely not told her where he'd run off to. She would probably have a good guess, though, as she hadn't come running as of yet. He drew a breath and sat down, facing the direction he'd come from. "Maybe when you're older we can convince her to let me take you on a patrol or two. This one was rather boring, and I was all on my lonesome." he said. He hadn't anticipated anything happening, since the ball things seemed to have calmed down somewhat... though the dangers were still out there. He knew safer routes they could go on together.
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Arran Kinnaird
Male <1 Highlander Commonwealth N/A
Undecided

7

posts
55.00

renown
Medium • Balsalm & Cedar


Little Lion Man
posted 01-14-2022, 07:42 PM - Word count:
#5



Little Lion Man

If perfection existed than it was here and now for the little lion man. This day with the subtle breeze, with the sun breaking through the canopy of the trees. This place with the ruins scattered so beautifully betwixt the wilds of Perth. This moment with just he and his father. It all felt emblazoned upon his heart, his soul, his life.

Arran’s knitted brow would remain as his father responded with a tone slightly different than any he had heard before. There was almost a sadness there that the young pup could not fathom. It was a sentiment, an emotion that was reserved for a grown man. A soldier true but more importantly a father. Yet before he could inquire about it, before he would allow his father to know that he had seen, had heard the difference, the moment was over.

That was one of the many magical attributes of a father. For whether it be on purpose or not, he always knew how to assuage any fears no matter their inception. In this instance it was with a simple ‘my boy’ and more so another loving touch. Something Arran always felt starved for lest he admit it. There was always a warm embrace from mother. There was incessant playful nips and shoves from Orlaith and Gwydion. However, there were so few from father. It was not his fault. He was a soldier.

The ‘bump’ upon his shoulder burned with the warmth of his touch so much so that his next words were almost lost to the boy. Almost. The mention of mother worrying left Arran fighting to not roll his emerald eyes to the heavens. An action that had warranted him correction in the past and so he did his best to cock his head at the same to avoid it looking like what it truly was. Thankfully father had turned to sit facing away from him but also in mirror of him!

Such small actions left large impressions on the little lion man. It made him feel as if perhaps he was a good sentry after all. That maybe, just maybe he was cut from the same cloth as his father. A soldier in the making as he so wished to be. The heavy longing of it seemingly coming to fruition in these simple instances and while satisfying to the young pup, they waned in comparison to what father suggested next.

Arran could barely believe it. Father suggested that he could go with him on patrol! Imagine that!? He, Arran Kinnaird on a real patrol with a real soldier. Oh, but not just any soldier, the best soldier the Imperial Army has ever seen, his father Baelfire!

There was no way for him to contain his excitement let alone form a reply. Small forepaws tapped excitedly on the ancient ruin beneath them until his rear could no longer contain the seated position it had been pinned in. Arran’s ivory and russet frame almost instinctually assumed an ageless stance before his head threw back to give a full bodied little howl.

AROOOOOOOOO!

Once all the air escaped his mighty little lungs, Arran turned to his father expectantly. He hoped he was proud. He hoped it was as powerful as he thought it was. Then, in a somewhat rare occurrence, the little lion man, gave in to puppy antics. He leapt from his perch to snap at his father’s closest audit.

“Did you hear that father? I bet that would send the enemies running!”

He gave a small growl to further prove his strength, his tenacity. One day he would be a mighty soldier alongside his father and no one would be able to stop them!



@Baelfire

Male 4 Lowlander Imperial Army Soldier
Royalist

106

posts
122.00

renown
Large • prarie grass



posted 01-19-2022, 05:45 PM - Word count:
#6

baelfire
Baelfire had big dreams about his future, and that of his children, he just hoped that he and Sorcha could see eye to eye long enough to acheive them. They were in a good place now, with the children it was easy... there was no time to argue or debate politics and because of that their household was peaceful. He wouldn't dare break that peace in front of the children, though, and he knew she wouldn't either. He wanted his kids to know they were loved and that their parents loved one another, too. Even those so different from each other could come together. It was a lesson in life and so much more...

His ears perked as Arran began to shuffle his paws and he looked down at the boy in time to see him throw back his head and howl, signifying his excitement at the prospect of going on patrol.

Baelfire might've joined in, but he held back and let the boy howl his happiness to the world. It echoed on the wind and once he finished and turned to face Baelfire again, the man let out a laugh. "I suppose it would! If I heard such a bellow I would run away in my fright!" he said, picking up a paw and placing it on his chest. Then, he dropped to the ground, faking 'death' for the boy.

"You've done it now, I am... too scared... to even run..." he said, as if paralyzed by fear. Baelfire curled his paws over his eye and the spot where his other eye would've been, then peeked out through his toes at Arran, a small smile on his lips as his tail twitched behind him mischeiviously. Without a word, he darted a paw out and bopped the boy's legs, much like a cat playing with it's prey might do.

His big paw slid over his muzzle and he smirked at Arran whilst laying on his side as if to ask 'what are you gonna do about THAT?'
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Arran Kinnaird
Male <1 Highlander Commonwealth N/A
Undecided

7

posts
55.00

renown
Medium • Balsalm & Cedar


Little Lion Man
posted 02-02-2022, 06:32 PM - Word count:
#7



Little Lion Man

It felt easy to be but a playful pup. To relinquish control of subdued emotions and soldier etiquette. To simply let loose. Allow his body to just react. Give in to the ease of no inhibitions. For if this was what it always felt like, then Arran could almost imagine why his brother acted as he did. Even Orlaith would buckle to the pressures of play if pushed and pressed hard enough by Gwydion.

The exhilaration buzzed within his small frame from the moment father mentioned the patrol. It had started as no more than an electric hum. Yet it quickly grew in charge, in power, until it sparked a fire. It was that flame that fueled his howl. It was that conflagration which grew with the oxygen Arran breathed into it.

A wildfire burned until the coals of his being were red hot. Until an ivory wolf was bursting at the seams with a russet blaze. It left the little lion man reckless in abandon as he all but shouted his joy to his father, as he snapped at his father’s closest audit.

Arran was the sun. Arran was the son! He knew this to be true because father confirmed it. He bolstered the boy’s confidence by affirming how fierce his howl had been. After all, father didn’t lie. Although in this case he did in fact, ‘die.’ Baelfire feigned his own death. Murder by sheer fright. The little lion man was a force to be reckoned with now. Imagine when he was a true Imperial soldier.

The Kinnaird prince assessed his fallen father with a toothy grin. A slight forced rumble in his throat that mimicked a growl. He was trying to decide how best to attack the weakened, paralyzed enemy. A large paw covered Bael's maw, his eye. A fairly good place to target but the subtle swishing of his father’s tail distracted him. That fire, those loose puppy inhibitions made the wagging pennant look too appealing to ignore.

His russet crown dipped while his ivory rump rose into a bow. Yet before he could take further action, a deft white paw suddenly reached out and bopped his extended forelegs. The action surprised him as he had thought his enemy was downed. An important lesson for the growing little soldier who let out a startled yap before nipping at the assailing paw.

It was time to focus. It was time to harness that fire and make it work for him. Arran dodged any potential repercussions of his quick nip to throw himself in a hail Mary leap onto the belly of the beast. Hopefully a soft landing where he could attempt to give that wagging tail a piece of his mind. For his brow furrowed once more in concentration to time the movement just so, snapping and grasping nothing but air.

The little lion man clearly had some things to work on in terms of his attack, his timing. If he weren’t so full of these flames than perhaps it would upset him but not now, not today. This one on one time with his father meant everything to him. He seemed to instinctually know that each word, each moment was meant to be a lesson and Arran was an eager student. Teach me father. Show me how to be just like you.



@Baelfire

Male 4 Lowlander Imperial Army Soldier
Royalist

106

posts
122.00

renown
Large • prarie grass



posted 02-22-2022, 07:39 PM - Word count:
#8

baelfire
The boy was bound with determination and an energy Baelfire had not witness since his own childhood. He had not the fierce nature his son harbored and for that he knew he must thank his mother. Baelfire had always been the more relaxed one, but even he could be stirred every one in a while. He smirked as Arran tried an array of attacks and with each, Baelfire pretended to be wounded further, as if the boy were truly defeating him. As he grew he would quickly realize that not every battle would end in such triumph so the fact that he could give that to him now... well, it was just a moment Baelfire knew they'd both look back upon fondly.

He felt, suddenly, a sharp sting on his tail where one of Arran's fierce bites finally landed. He jumped a little, startled, but not harmed. "Woah! You really got me!" he barked playfully, a laugh dashed between his words. He reached over to try and tousle the boy's fur with a large paw.

"What say you, brave warrior, that we... head back home. It's getting late and I'm sure everyone is missing us." he said, curling his body and bumping the boy on his shoulder with his nose. He slowly rose to his paws and drew in a breath. "I can even show you the quickest way home, if you haven't already figured it out." he said with a smile. As much as he'd love to stay and play, it would be dark soon and Sorcha was expecting him-- and probably Arran with him as well. He wouldn't put his son in danger too with the impending night and the other predators that loved to lurk within the darkness. "Come on, son." he said, nodding his head towards the well beaten path he often found himself taking.

exit baelfire
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