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.


Somewhere Over the Rainbow

 photo Zawyne2.png

All that she knew what she was overwhelmingly tired. First, she had traveled for days to get away from the kingdom, then through the portal, and then for a few more days as they tried to find each other. Zawyne had tried to rest, but had been awoken by Noctis. And then, past that, she had walked even more days in order to find the rest of the Arcus Irae. So, as she counted in her head, she had been walking for roughly two million days and had only slept for about three hours in all of that. She wanted to find Vera just as much as Losa did, but why did they have to find her now? Zawyne dragged her toes behind her sister - her claws made long little furrows in the soft moss and peat bed that they were trending upon. Why had Vera run in the first place anyway? Because of Aindreas and Adara? They were nice! All they had been was helpful so far… None of them were evil, not like Duma. Why could no one except for her understand that? Why had Vera run… It did not make any sense. Zawyne had told her that she didn’t need to fear these new Tempests. And now, because Vera had not listened to her, they were having to track her down. Zawyne wished that she was back in the kingdom, where she had both Oferwederen guards and normal guards, ones that could carry her when she wanted to do nothing else but sleep. Sleep… that was such a lovely word. Sleep… She was so tired! The walking became automatic, and her head began to droop lower and lower, and her lids began to fold over her eyes more… And more… And more…

Until, very suddenly, she was wide-awake. A scream pulled itself from her lips and she almost fell to the ground. It was as if she had been struck in the head with a large boulder, so disoriented was she. It was as if Duma had clamped down around her chest and punctured her heart, so painful was she and so hard for her to breathe. But she knew that neither of those happened… For even as the pain came, she could see that Losa and Scamander felt the same. Tears began to stream down her face and she shook her head in denial. If only she had not complained so much, if only she had pushed through her exhaustion and run… Pushing the pace instead of holding everyone else behind. If only she had been able to convince Vera from the very beginning that she… That she was in no harm from the new tempests. Long, drawn out sobs pulled from her lips, yet through the watery bed of haze she saw an approaching titan. She recognized him immediately from the meeting before - he had carried Vera in then, and now it seemed that he was carrying her once more. Zawyne could not find words to express her thoughts and so she merely stumbled and mumbled over words that were not spoken. Somehow, Losa seemed able to gather her wits, and asked Archangel what had happened. And it was too horrible for Zawyne to fully grasp. Murder? Here? They had come here to escape murder, to start their lives anew and escape from that sort of vile creature who could kill others. Who would kill a rainbow? No one… Nothing other than a…

… Vampire…

The word came to her lips but no sound pushed it through, and so she was left to mouth the word silently. Its vileness stung her lips to even say it, and she inhaled sharply. It tasted as if she had eaten a bitter root, and the very idea of them sent a wave of terror though her veins. Her delicate little paws danced her to her sister’s side, and she pressed against her, looking for comfort. Losa was thinking the same thing, wasn’t she? Weren’t they all?

But we… But we have not heard of any. Do you think… They are really here?

Her eyes immediately searched for Adara, even though she knew the Oferweder was not near. None of the tempest were… Here… They were totally exposed. Zawyne closed her eyes and focused all of her will on her emotions, hoping Adara would feel her fear… But even if she did feel her, who was to say where she was. How long would it take Adara to reach her? And Zawyne lost her self in the flood of her emotions… She could feel the darkness of the vampires. How could she have been so blind to it? And they were… They were not far from here. Zawyne stood on her haunches and put her paws on her sister‘s shoulder, so that she could tug gently at Losa‘s ear.

Sister, we have to go. Can’t you feel them? We have to…

Another stroke of pain ran through her, this one dulled only because of the distance. Zawyne fell to the moss bed and another sob fell from her lips.

Fallon? Oh no…

Zawyne shook, trembling, and got to her paws hesitantly. Despite her heart ache, she knew that they could not stay, not here, not now. She nearly retched at the thought of each of the rainbow‘s death, but more terrifying was the thought of her own. And the thought of her sister‘s and the thought of everyone else’s. She took one step, and then another from everyone.

Please… We have to leave. Archangel, we have no protection. Right now we are fully exposed… Will you… Will you stay with us? Will you bear the weight of Vera until we can find a place to properly bury her and say our goodbyes? I will not let her stay here in this dark place, where she was taken from us. She deserves a place of beauty and peace. We all do, don’t wait? We need a home, and the safety of a pack will protect us, won’t it?

||Zawyne|| ||Heart of Gold|| ||Lost Princess of a Stolen Kingdom|| ||Here I am a commoner|| ||No stats when Young|| ||Pup||


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