setting
Index was once a small and close-knit community, but the town located on the western side of Washington state has grown in recent years beyond anyone's expectations. It is the ideal place for those who work in Seattle but can't afford the city's high real estate prices, and for others the natural beauty attracts them to the town. And Index truly is a beautiful place - surrounded by thick evergreen trees, tall mountains and glistening rivers and lakes. While weather is typically rainy with overcast skies even this does nothing to take away from the beauty of the town, and it is only highlighted further when the heavy snow graces the town and caps the mountains in winter. To many, Index would seem like a paradise. And yet lurking beneath this visual beauty there is more to this town than anyone might ever imagine...

Current Time in Index, Washington:
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 [Private] Near Journey's End

[Private] Near Journey's End

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Paul Thacker
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[Private] Near Journey's End

Paul Thacker | Wolf; Warlord/Battlelord

Posted on Wed Mar 01, 2017 2:08 am

Thread Details
Forest | Clear, Cold | Night of Bonfire

This takes place the night of the bonfire


Seventy nine. Seventy nine years old, but you'd never know it. Vega still worked the gardens, chased after the young ones and cooked. I think I've even seen her carrying firewood recently. The fact that she kept going was what kept her going. Sure, Vega loved her potions, her herbal remedies. As much as I enjoyed her wisdom, I still could never bring myself to drink the putrid concoction she claimed was her little fountain of youth. How would one describe it? Imagine if you vomited in a bucket of fish, left it to rot for a week, then put it in a blender with some ice. That's exactly what it had to be. Maybe it worked, but even if it did, I think I'd rather die than drink that every day. My old house was filled with tapestries made by her, some for my dad twenty years ago. You couldn't tell the new from the old, and that was a secret she never told. Aging for her almost didn't happen. Vega kept her original ability a secret, but I suspected it had something to do with youth or renewal, something like that. I sucked at guessing age, but she only looked to be about 45, fifty tops.

But now, she looked nothing like Vega. She lie between Matrix and myself on a stretcher, curled up, sleeping, arm in a sling, opposing leg in a splint. I'd made sure to clean off the blood, and what a humbling task it was to bathe her. Now I looked, and it almost appeared that she was aging before my eyes. I guess this had been the thing I never thought I'd have to see. I knew I'd outlive the others, that I would be an "elder" when I became pack master. But I thought Vega would be forever.

"Ye of little faith. You're already saying goodbye?" I heard it, and it was Vega's voice, but she was still sound asleep. I grinned slightly and shook my head. There was almost nothing this woman couldn't do. At least I hoped. I gave Matrix with a questioning look. Had she scolded him too? Of course, I wouldn't know. It was already dark, besides for whatever reason, Matrix loved looking like the mysterious hooded assassin. No face for me to read. You did hear what was said about the fangs, right? You ready for that? Word was that it wasn't just issues with the Supremacy, but that the place was overrun anyway. The fact that there was "one around every corner" might have been an exaggeration, but it didn't bode well. I knew we were leaving one place of turmoil for another, but we were also regrouping. We needed help, they needed help. This was our only option. There were others, who might as well be dead to me. Others who had deserted us as if we were a failed afterschool program. Who thought they could just slink into society, hiding in a minivan in a fucking subdivision taking their kids to baseball practice. I had to try not to think about it, and I hated myself for the joy I felt when I thought of them being found. I was supposed to be worried for them, and part of it was anger at myself for failing to convince them of the truth - that they weren't safe. I supposed this was the best way I could cope. But the logic didn't fade that they would die hiding rather than fighting.

We're close, Matrix, I said, stopping, and checking on Vega before I took a glance at our surroundings. I could smell wolves and humans, together. I had a twist in my gut at that. I didn't dislike humans - I had just hoped this wouldn't be a repeat. Still a few miles, but, I looked at the stretcher, the curled body with the one straightened leg. It wasn't a chore to carry her, although my arms were tired, and the last thing I wanted was to hurt Vega. We should set up camp here, gather what information we can before approaching.

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Re: [Private] Near Journey's End

Keon N Ravelich | Wolf; Warrior/Fighter

Posted on Thu Mar 02, 2017 2:37 am

…you’re chillin with Teak….ad free music for…..next song is a request…..boyfriend, with love…. 

Two Miles. I knew it was two miles as radio frequencies were starting to flicker into my head without me inviting them. Back to the same old shit. Having spent so much time in blissful silence I almost wanted to turn around and walk back in the opposite direction. The music that began fading in and out was from The Chainsmokers. Not that I was a fan or anything. Get forced to listen to random stations and you knew the core sound of almost everything. I could, if I tried, change the station, zero in on something I wanted to jam along to but that required effort. Not something I had enough mental capacity for right now. It wasn’t often that I expended that level of energy on something as superfluous as selecting another genre of music anyway. Made me wanna take a big fat nap. My eyes were locked on Vega’s sleeping form, hood pulled up, dipping low over my face. Far more focused on the Spiritual Leader than the half-audible lyrics. If it’s bothering you, tune it out. I’m fine. I hadn’t said a word and neither had she. Sometimes Vega freaked me the hell out. She really did. Wolf gifts were strange enough without the mystery that was the Sequoia’s leading lady. I had always been in awe of her grace. One of the many women that I had come to see as a surrogate Mother. Which was why it cut me up inside seeing her laid out.

“Huh?” Half distracted by the music, half by Vega’s dwindling health, I gave Apollo my default start to almost every conversation. Since I spent a fair amount of time stuck in my own head, locked in by electrical waves, I almost always wasn’t paying attention to other living beings. “Yeah sure, place sounds like paradise.” We’d had our own share of problems but they hadn’t been of the bloodsucking kind until fairly recently. It was still a shock to consider the Alpha was dead. We’d sat around for a bit, expecting Apollos eyes to turn white but shit hadn’t happened. What the hell were we supposed to do? That’s when the kid had arrived. Was actually pretty hilarious that his name was actually Kidd. Spun some tale about a new pack formation. A patchwork blanket of all the packs that had been destroyed. All the packs. Still couldn’t fathom that.

Tenderly placing the stretcher down I frowned at Vega’s seemingly peaceful face. We had a few that were injured but none to the extent she was. The majority of our survivors, two of them children, were a ways back, waiting for us to send a messenger. Had to make sure this shit wasn’t some elaborate Supremacy trap now didn’t we? “Where’s Kidd?” As soon as I’d said it the weedy little boy appeared from the shadows which almost made me jump out of my skin. “Right here.” There was something feral about the kid that had me backing my truck up. The fact he’d been fairly cryptic about who he was and who had sent him didn’t do anything to squash that feeling either. “Soooo.” I dragged the word out, pulling back my hood as if it would somehow make me seem more approachable. “Information. We need more of it, you’ve got it, so cough up the gold.” Kidd grinned at me. While I was assuming it was meant to be friendly, his ragged dirty appearance made me think of a street urchin after my wallet first and foremost.

“The Alpha here is alive and well and forming an army.” We’d already heard this story. “He’s calling in all wolves to fight back.” Yeap, same old song. I tried to pay attention as he was getting super excited about it all. He seemed to get amped over just speaking to us, which was really weird. The more he spoke the less I was paying attention. I wasn’t being a dick, not intentionally anyway. The music in my head was drifting in with different levels of volume. Giving me more and more lyrics, more melody. Distracting. How much you wanna risk? I’m not looking for somebody with some super human gifts, some super hero, some fairy-tale bliss “Just somebody I can turn to.” I muttered the lyrics halfway through the young wolfs spiel having gotten caught by the music for a moment. “What?” Letting out a deep sigh I shook my head at him. “Sorry, missed all of that.” Kidd looked exasperated and gestured towards the town. “We should just go. It’s fine. Really guys. She said I should hurry that he’s expecting us.” Wait what? Who was this ‘she’ person?

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Paul Thacker
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Re: [Private] Near Journey's End

Paul Thacker | Wolf; Warlord/Battlelord

Posted on Thu Mar 02, 2017 11:08 pm

I can't even joke about it.. I did, so far, like the smell. A little - moldy? Musty? But it was natural. More damp, wet, which meant more green. Water and irrigation for the farm would be a dream. It was the climate. It would take me forever to get used to the cold. I would throw away the water, the green, all of it, for things to just have happened like they should have happened. Yeah, sure, there was pressure about being alpha, but I was ready for it. But it never came. Apparently, this was why. What fucking luck, right? Like winning the presidential election in November just in time to see the country nuked before inauguration day even came 'round.

Kidd seemed more elf-like than wolf, and when he suddenly appeared I had the feeling that I was about to be taken to the entrance of a haunted whimsical toy factory. He was too excited for this. This was all but my pack's "Trail of Tears" and here he was with a grin that almost sliced his face in half. I could have easily empathized with him. He was young, maybe the turmoil was all he knew, and we were coming to the rescue. And sometimes when you're a kid change is more exciting than scary. But at the time I couldn't be fucked with empathy. It was Matrix's no nonsense tone that actually lifted my corners to a small smile. It was easy to count him as being on the same page as me, no matter what kind of face I had to keep as some form of leader.

Yeah, Kidd, we've got the general idea. That's why we're here to begin with. What's going on now? Am I expected to check in with the local DNR or what? It was a joke and obviously above his head.

"No! That doesn't sound like a good idea. The pack master here, his name is..." He said what sounded to me like "Ox" but that couldn't be right. I'm pretty sure I'd refuse a wolf name like that. "And there's the blonde lady. I think she goes by Luxx." It was sheer luck that we'd already sat the stretcher on the ground, or as much as I loved my Vega, she might have been dropped.

Did you say Luxx? Coincidence. Some of these names got used a lot, might as well tag a "69" or "420" after it for uniqueness, right? He said blonde lady. She wasn't a fucking lady, though, was she? My gaze shot to Matrix. Is it her? Do you know? I started attempting to smell, trying to seek out a scent I'd long since tried to forget. My fists were clenched. Half or more of our goddamn population dead and that bitch couldn't be one of them?! Kidd seemed scared.

"No, no, I don't know who you're talking about but this lady is really nice." I shook my head. You've got something to learn about trust, Kidd. I could feel my chest heaving and I was sure my eyes were glowing. I'll kill her. It doesn't have to look like me. Not hard to poke two fang holes right?

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Re: [Private] Near Journey's End

Keon N Ravelich | Wolf; Warrior/Fighter

Posted on Sat Mar 04, 2017 11:27 pm

Hey! I quite like this song. Bobbing my head I happily accepted the random station change. That happened quite often if I didn’t try to lock it down. Sometimes it was a shock to the senses. Suddenly interrupted mid classical composition by Cannibal Corpse played at an eardrum bleeding volume.  This was from the newest Batman movie. That was one of the only things I liked about modern society. Super Hero movies. Even dressed up as Deadpool for Halloween. Apollo would have my arse if he knew that I’d ditched out on Hallows Eve with the pack to trek into Civilisation. Usually I kept my distance. Getting close meant my head got invaded with all the headaches of technology. I’d suffer that to get to pretend I was a badass, wise cracking anti hero, for one night though. The catchy beat had complete control over my senses until Apollo said one word. Or more specifically one name.

Everything stopped for a moment. My body physically recoiled. I’d even lost the frequency that had me half muttering under my breath along with the rapper. Luxx. Luxx. Sounded like it could be a brand name for an extravagant hair care product. Or a chocolate bar which claimed to have been handmade. Or even a swanky nightclub that played the latest dance music. Oh no. That would make too much fucking sense. Luxx was instead the name of a manipulative backstabbing piece of shit. A name that invoked the deepest terror in me. Fangers could be scary, but you knew what they were capable of, how cold they were. It was different when the shitstorm came in the form of a small, blonde woman who had seemed…cool. Urgh. Saying that to describe her after what I knew now. So wrong. So very very wrong. “No…no, it can’t be her….no way.” My mouth dropped open. Wide open. Like I was trying to shove a whole burger in it and would sell my left testicle for a detachable jaw. Apollo was flipping his shit but I was freaking out. Pulling my hood back up over my head I just wanted this to all be a bad dream. There was no way this could get that bad. Have our pack be destroyed and then have to deal with her again?

“You’ll never know the freak show sitting next to you.” Lyrics but ones that fit the situation. The panic that had hold of my insides made the ability to not look like a weirdo and belt them out impossible. Both of you need to calm down. I’d never understood why Vega hadn’t been as angry as the rest of the pack had been. Those that weren’t pissed off were just horrified. Luxx had been well liked, even if she had been a bit mouthy at times. A bit rough around the edges. We had just assumed she had been treated badly, seeing she was a Lone. The fact we had…vouched for her…let her in…Apollo and I had opened the door to the devil and invited her in for tea and biscuits. “Cockroach. She’s a fucking cockroach.” Felt like the temperature had dropped several degrees, as an uncontrollable shiver ran down my spine.

“And I’ll help you, you know I will.” Stop this! Both of you! You shall not kill any wolf. You are the last of the Sequoia and you shall act accordingly. Vega’s voice was becoming fainter by the second. I got it. I understood. We shouldn’t even be getting hung up on this. I couldn’t shake it though. She had ruined everything. It was better for everyone if that bitch was dead. We could do it on the sly. Apollo had the right idea. No-one would have to know that we’d been disrespectful. We wouldn’t have to try and convince them that she wasn’t whatever person they thought she was.

“I’m…I’m gonna check.” Matrix. Don’t waste your energy on something that doesn’t matter. Oh it fucking mattered. Of course it did. Tilting my head up slightly, even though I didn’t really need to, my eyes began to glow an intense green. I hated the fact that I remembered her phone number but it was for a very good reason. To make sure that neither of us ever saw her again. There was some comfort in the fact Apollo regarded the utterance of her name with such anger, as we hadn’t really spoken about it. No one actually wanted to think about the time where our packs hospitality had bitten us in the arse. So we’d never sat down and had a chat about how we felt about someone who had, shared our table, come on our camping trips, who had…that one time…. Blocking out memories I focused on trying to find out whether the phone number I remembered had been used in the area. At this distance, I would only be able to latch onto the signal for a brief moment if it was there at all. Apollo’s nose was better than mine, but my sense of smell was not the reason why I had been trained as a Sequoia scout.

Teeth clenching in horror my face crumpled. She was here and it didn’t look good. I’d gotten one sent text message from the phone frequency.

 -He has lots of friends. Wtf do u want me 2 do? Stalk them all? Then I’d have no time for him-

“It’s her.” I wanted my voice to sound more like Apollo’s. With a fire and a fury. Instead, it comes out like a statement of defeat. “And she’s plotting against this pack master too by the looks of it.” I slumped down next to Vega’s stretcher, my legs unable to hold me up any longer. Regardless of how quickly Kidd wanted us to move towards the poisoned promised land, I needed to take a break.

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Paul Thacker
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Re: [Private] Near Journey's End

Paul Thacker | Wolf; Warlord/Battlelord

Posted on Sun Mar 05, 2017 9:25 am

I never understood people who believed in absolutes. Emotions are good, emotions are bad - neither was true. Emotions simply existed and what was good or bad was your reaction to them. Perhaps I was just lucky enough for that thought to enter my mind, or some similar variation, which caused me to stop and do my best to think objectively. In this case, I knew nothing good would come of my reaction to anger. No, what I needed was to be a leader, and first and foremost that meant protection. No, I wasn't alpha, but until something else came along, I was all the leader we had. So what did my wolves need from me?

We needed Vega. We needed as much familiarity as we could get when everything around is was crumbling into pieces. We know now, that's why we're cautious. Yes, I hated it. I hated that this tiny, runt-like creature that resembled a cheerleader more than a wolf presented such a danger to my pack that I was bringing our "march" to a halt. Obviously, it wasn't like there was imminent physical danger, but at a time when morale was already dangerously low, there were few things that could be left to chance. I wasn't a fan of secrets, but I'd love to be able to "take care of" her presence here before it became an issue. And yes, it was her. Call it pessimism, but I didn't need proof. I didn't expect any other kind of luck. I'm not going to kill her, Vega. Slowly, I sat down, looking ahead but I wrapped my hand around the side of Vega's head. For both my comfort and hers. I wanted her to see me calm, I didn't want any energy spent on me or the past. When we left, I had replied to the disdain for the idea of going north with bullshit about going ahead and not looking back. Now I had to live by my own words, right?

Kidd, I said, looking up at the once eager youngling who now seemed more confused than anything. I realized the pointlessness of what I was about to ask, before it came out of my mouth, so I decided against asking him for some secrecy about our arrival. We're not going to jump right in, so tell them they can expect us in a few days at the earliest. He did one quick nod and was gone. He seemed to get the idea of the privacy we needed.

I pursed my lips and exhaled, studying Matrix in a look that was a few parts frustration and the rest a temporary resignation. My fingers were petting Vega's head, and from the corner of my eye I saw a weak smile. Matrix and I both in a sense claimed her as a mother. Maybe it was shitty of me to do so, since I had one, but somehow I felt like mine didn't count. You remember before Dad finally had enough, and he kicked Mom out, she became the most - the second most manipulative bitch imaginable? I looked down at Vega with a single raised brow. Don't say anything, you know I gotta vent. I waited briefly for a reply. I wouldn't take her to her dealer, but the story she told was that I wouldn't take her to the pharmacy. For her life saving meds. I shook my head. Not sure why that's relevant. Other than my next idea that we simply shut her out. Do you think they know yet? That they're being scammed? Swindled? Gah, I bet this was jackpot in her eyes. She let the vampires do the weakening for her?

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