When solid ground grows soft with emerald moss and rivulets of black mud, and coffee-colored water pours slowly around the trunks of densely carpeted trees, this marks the beginning of Laod Mor: the swamp of Blossom Forest. Time itself seems to slow to a soporific crawl . . . the humid jungle air grows stagnant, thick with the scent of rich flooded earth and an abundance of green things that can be found nowhere else—except perhaps Caidir Olc. In some areas of the swamp, water rises so high the only way to cross it is to crawl across fallen logs or massive roots arching from their liquid beds; in other places a wolf might wade easily through the mire—or find a fortunate stretch of mostly dry earth. Pieces of the great river, Glaesfaet Sceawere, also slice through from time to time: small falls that feed into surprisingly clear pools, only to terminate into tar-like pits. Of course, Laod Mor’s beauty shines brightest at night. Here, fireflies gather at all times of the year . . . suffusing the shadowy place with millions of twinkling lights.

Those looking to hunt here of course find a myriad of water prey, including caiman, turtles, fish, crayfish, otters, and toads.


The Fatal Optimist


Everything seemed to fall out of place so easily these days, but hopefully now he would be able to hold them in place. The white knight had settled himself at the top of the hierarchy, though he still found it hard to comprehend at moments. For it had always been embedded in him to be Beta, nothing more and nothing less. That was his birth right back in his old homeland, but even after he had left the young brute had been promised to a princess soon after arriving within Blossom Forest. With it had come the position as the Beta of Spring Grounds. But then he had found love in the arms of another fea, Miss Cordelia, as he had so aptly called her. He had retained his position and somewhat of a connection to the young woman who he had been promised to. Until her life took a turn that arguably could have been good or bad for her. It had been the unfortunate circumstance that she had had to take the throne after her father’s disappearance and it did not help that her whole family had shattered after Signless was murdered by Kanaya, the Queen and their mother. Lucaya was the only child left to take the throne, for no one had seen the likes of Thyrius.

Darkness had embedded itself in the young Lucaya’s heart, and as she rose to the helm of Spring Grounds its shadowy tendrils wove through the pack lands. The bright land fell under a spell of darkness and Pierce did what he could to counsel the young Queen, but he could not help her when the call of a challenger rang heavy across the lands. Everyone fell silent whilst their Queen took on the nameless caller, and Pierce wasn’t sure what to expect. He knew nothing of Lucaya’s training. Her father had been absent and he had never really taught her anything in the realm of fighting. After a few days with no sign of Lucaya’s return Pierce realized that she would not be returning any longer, at least not under Queenly pretenses. That was when Stormy had showed on the borders of the pack.

Pierce had given her his word of protection and loyalty, hoping that maybe now they would rest easily. And he could finally have the time and chance to be with his mate, without worry or fear. Alas this could not come to pass either. In the days, weeks and months to come The new Queen suffered sickness and leaves of absence while she tended to matters that the Beta did not really know of. Pierce tried to remain indifferent to the multitude of things that piled atop his shoulders. He tried to walk head high, proud to be so trusted by his Alphess but eventually exhaustion began to wear down on his body. He would spend days out on the lakeside trying to wash away or numb the aches that consumed his body. And at night he hardly found the energy to stay awake with Cordelia and discuss their life. So it happened that their love was put on hold, per say. The talk of children never happened and their usual playfulness dulled and Pierce worried that this was taking a toll on his lover. For as much as he tried, Pierce knew he couldn’t hind the heavy load that rested upon their shoulders in the absence of the Alphess.

To Pierce, the hierarchy of the pack was in place to even disperse the weight of the work to keep the pack running. It was true the Alpha’s held most of it but it had become apparent to Pierce that as Beta he was turning into the substitute Alpha more than anything. And so when Stormy Horizion had seemed to disappear for the last time Pierce felt it would be best to take the pack for himself, he would not sit in unrest waiting for a stranger to come claim this land. He would not subject himself, his mate, or his packmates to that cyclic cycle any longer. And peace seemed to settle easily over the pack lands, Pierce had the support of a majority though Aindreas harbored anger and resentment. Pierce understood though, that the only the white knight had come to Spring Grounds had been Stormy, though it had been at Pierce’s behest. Pierce wanted to help Aindreas and to keep him from focusing on the loss of Stormy, Pierce had made him Epsilon. And he would be sending wolves out to gain alliances in the near future, but for now the King wanted some peace.

The ghostly knight had been wandering through his lands marking the borders, but he had turned himself outwards and headed off into the brush of the lands outside of Spring Grounds. The soft sounds of water running under crystal layers, created a musical that resounded through the barren woods and drew the King near. What he did not expect to see was the figure of the young Lucaya sitting upon the bank. Pierce padded steadily towards her, not hiding himself from her. The sound of claws digging into the silt alerted him, and he paused, You wouldn’t be bothered by company would you, Lucaya?

"Optimism is fatal in my experience," He growls.

{Pierce} :: {Knight to Cordelia} :: {Alpha of Spring Grounds} :: {No Relations}

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