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Shaun's Rite of  Passage

May 10, 2002

Danni: *Danni finds Shaun at the shop in the early evening, and motions for him to come sit on the couch with her*

Shaun Fur-of-Smoke: *Shaun shakes his fur, waking up... It dosen't take long as he bounds happily to Danni*

Danni: *she smiles and roughs his fur, then gets serious* You asked me last night how much longer you were gonna be a cub...

Shaun Fur-of-Smoke: *Sits up, ears at the attention* ~WS~ Yes?

Danni: I'm gonna send you out tonight, kiddo... *her worry shows in her eyes, but it's a mom thing*

Shaun Fur-of-Smoke: ~WS~ Really? Where? What is it? What's my pack?

Danni: Just you, Shaun. You're gonna do this on yer own. I know ya'll do ok. This is gonna be an umbral thing, all right? I know ya know tha umbra real good...

Shaun Fur-of-Smoke: ~WS~ Not as well as Dad... I haven't been able to get there lately..

Danni: *she strokes his fur* But you know more than I did when I went on my rite. You'll do fine, and this is easy, Shaun. I want you to go, and bring back a trophy. You'll know tha trophy when you see it, tha spirits will let you know what they want you to bring back.

Shaun Fur-of-Smoke: *Shaun enjoys the stroking, and he motions his agreement* ~WS~ What form do you want me in for it?

Danni: Whatever works for you, kiddo... I ain' gonna restrict you on that. *suddenly hugs him tight* Be careful, ok?

Shaun Fur-of-Smoke: ~WS~ When am I to go?

Danni: How about now? *tilts her head at him* The sooner you get going, the sooner you get home. And we'll have pizza. *forces a cheerful smile for him*

Shaun Fur-of-Smoke: *Seems focusing on the RoP now, even pizza can't dislodge him as he tenses* ~WS~ Where should I start to look for the spirits who'll tell me?

Danni: Just head to the umbra, Shaun. The interested ones will make themselves known.

Shaun Fur-of-Smoke: *Shaun nods and immediatley looks to the mirror in Danni's shop*

Danni: *bites her lip and lets him go...*

Auggy (ST type): *The Umbra is that softly familiar, palish reflection of the physical. It never fails to amaze, how...empty it seems. So few things have the spiritual strength needed for a representation on the spiritual side. A low howling wind creases the landscape, a low mournful howl of a dying spirit, a dying land...*

Shaun Fur-of-Smoke: *Shaun goes into the Umbra, waving a farewell to Danni with his tail as he steps sideways*

Shaun Fur-of-Smoke: *Shaun focuses on the beauty that his father showed him, as he begins to leave the area, sniffing around for clues*

Auggy (ST type): *The streets are...exceptionally dark. With no light from Luna to shine, the Umbra takes on a foreboding tone. The scents are dark, muted. Sounds echo strangely, lasting longer then they do in the physical. Spiders chitter here and there, and off in the distance, an incandescence glows*

Shaun Fur-of-Smoke: *Shaun starts towards the glow*

Auggy (ST type): ((Go towards the light. Good man.)) *After a time of walking, a doorway with light spilling out into the street can be seen. Entering gives a feeling of...destiny, grandeur, as the inside is rather unlike the outside-a grand hallway, entering a palace. Stone columns, hallways that quickly narrow to choke points, wrought-iron portcullis...whoever designed this was designing with an eye to eventual defense. How this got to Necropolis is...well, it's the spiritual. Of course strange things are going to be here.*

Danni: ((*LMAO*))

Shaun Fur-of-Smoke: *Shaun sniffs the area, and decides that he can afford to appreciate this with his human self.. It may be a setup that he needs hands for*

Shaun Fur-of-Smoke: *Shaun sniffs the area, and decides that he can afford to appreciate this with his human self.. It may be a setup that he needs hands for*

Auggy (ST type): *Upon closer inspection, the grand design and stout architecture seem to almost be a sham. You look into the throne room, and only 12 columns still stand, where once there were obviously many more. A gathering of human...royalty?...look at what appears to be a recently fallen column, with some tsking at the apparent folly, others simply shrugging.*

Shaun Fur-of-Smoke: *Shaun melts into his Homid form: he looks almost like a juvenile Joshua Puck, a few inches shorter.. He has the green eyes of his father, and shoulder-length brown hair that is nearly black. He wears a simple breechcloth in this form, with a medicine pouch around his neck. He looks around the area, keeping into the shadows*

Auggy (ST type): *Their dress is obviously finery, and looking at their features, they almost seem to scream out something. A man with a sharp hooked nose and pale features stands next to an olive-skinned woman who never seems to smile. One of the saddest ones seems to be someone who's features and clothing are distincly Bedouin*

Shaun Fur-of-Smoke: *Shaun just watches the proceedings, unsure if he is meant to be here.. He crouches almost subhumanly*

Auggy (ST type): *After a few more minutes of prowling, Shaun sees a woman standing off to the side. Her rags are well-kept, and her hair is clean. Even with the obvious changes, it's definitely Danni, flanked by Dave...and Joshua.*

Shaun Fur-of-Smoke: *Shaun tilts his head, and he makes his way over towards the trio he can recognize*

Danni: *Danni looks toward Shaun, tilting her head with a hint of curiosity, speaking quietly in softer tones than Shaun has ever heard* I know this face not...

Auggy (ST type): *The other figures are chattering amongst themselves, the Bedouin keeping the greek female and a Viking from splitting each others' heads open as the hook-nosed man stands just behind the King, rubbing his hands together in anticipation.*

Shaun Fur-of-Smoke: *Blinks at Danni* I..

Danni: *she glances to the two men at her sides, David and Joshua, apparently expecting one of them to have an answer for her*

Shaun Fur-of-Smoke: *Sharp intake* I don't understand..

Danni: *has no response to that name, she approaches Shaun, looking him over* Interesting that he comes now... *glances toward the recently fallen column, then back to Shaun*

Shaun Fur-of-Smoke: *Looks to Joshua* Father?

Auggy (ST type): *A solemn nod* Whither his wind blows us ill, or good, I can not see.

Auggy (ST type): *Joshua simply favors Shaun with a smile and a finger to his lips, obviously fionding humor even in this plight*

Auggy (ST type): *Joshua wears the oversized hat and brilliant colors of the one who would be the Fool, if this were a court of some long-dead age*

Danni: *directs an amused smile at Joshua, then back to Shaun* And what wind does bring you here, young one?

Shaun Fur-of-Smoke: I am sent to the Umbra... To find something for my passage..

Danni: Ah...a young knight on a quest, then...

Auggy (ST type): *Dave rumbles* Passages...all things must pass from one thing to another...*Digs into one poacket for a morsel, reaching across his belly to place it in another pocket. AS he does so, there is a glimpse of whiskers, black fur, and oversized incisors*

Auggy (ST type): *Finally, the apparent leader ascends the throne, his crown slightly askew. If anyone notices, they're too polite to mention it. His voice has but the slightest quaver, from anticipation or fear is not known.* "My breathren...the core still is strong within us. I beseech you to determine your champions, and with them make ready for the final stand. The Castille shall not fall. This day, or any day." *AS he speaks, the sun sets with frightful rapidity, transforming the well lit hall into a strangely lit home of shadows and cold white candles*

Shaun Fur-of-Smoke: *A bit confused, looking at his simple clothing and up to Danni, searching in his mind, and nods* I am dressed as one on his vision quest for passage to manhood.

Danni: *she nods to Shaun, the motions for him to be quiet for a moment as she turns to watch the throned man*

Danni: *she nods to Shaun, the motions for him to be quiet for a moment as she turns to watch the throned man*

Shaun Fur-of-Smoke: *Listens to the procession*

Auggy (ST type): *The kings silvered beard barely moves with his breathing, as he looks to each face. Strangely, even though his voice has a quaver, and his crown sits oddly...he is every inch the King amongst these Kings and Quees*

Danni: *stands under that gaze silently, dropping her eyes enough to be submissive*

Auggy (ST type): *Finally, his eyes lock with the Fool, The Omega, The Peasant, and...Shaun. His temper flares as his eyes lock with Shaun* Who is this, that dares to stain these halls...what is his ~place~ in this?~

Shaun Fur-of-Smoke: *Shaun blinks* I... am not meaning to stain... I am here on a quest... I don't even know if I'm in the right place..

Auggy (ST type): You seek Quest? You seek frivolity, as the enemy sings our Death-Song? Speak your name, that you may be remembered.

Shaun Fur-of-Smoke: I am on a quest for passage to manhood, not for fun... My name.. Is Shaun Puck... Fur-of-Smoke

Auggy (ST type): *His voice is a mild roar* A mere ~stripling~, enters the Council? Shaun Puck Fur Of Smoke, thy actions mark thee bold.

Shaun Fur-of-Smoke: *Hangs his head, not sure what to think of any of this..*

Danni: *quietly* My lord...perhaps it is not so much bold as...fortuitous?

Auggy (ST type): *Apparently content, he sits upon the throne, which creaks dangerously under his weight* Thou seeketh quest, that thee may be marked as People, Thou wilt goest with thy companions and bring us news of our enemies. *absently* And if thee meet thy doom, the loss is...a loss.

Shaun Fur-of-Smoke: *Shaun nods softly, fear choking his words now*

Auggy (ST type): *mutters* yes, fortuitous. You and yours will go with Shaun Puck Fur of Smoke.

Danni: *nods her head in acquiesence, though what might lurk behind those eyes is anyone's guess. She motions for the men and Shaun to follow her out as she turns to go*

Shaun Fur-of-Smoke: *Shaun softly follows after Danni, wondering if he's supposed to be here*

Auggy (ST type): *The bells of the Fool are the only sound in the hall as he skips and capers out...dancing round each column in turn, even the fallen ones*

Danni: *once they are away from the gathering, she sighs a bit* He sends us out, expecting us to fail, and then wonders why the heart is going out of us all...

Auggy (ST type): *The first casualty is so sudden, nobody truly has time to react. It' accident. As the four walk out, the portcullis slams shut, dislodging a piece of masonry....striking the Omega/Dave, crushing him with such suddenness...and a rivulet of blood traces his palm, before sliding to the ground*

Shaun Fur-of-Smoke: I don't understand.... *Frowns*

Shaun Fur-of-Smoke: *Shaun jumps at the sound, and his eyes widen when he turns and sees the rivulet of blood* Dave!

Danni: *she turns her head to look on her fallen companion, then away as a silent tear streaks her cheek*

Auggy (ST type): *the Rat, squirms it's way out from underneath, apparently dazed by the suddenness. It climbs up on the masonry to resurvey its' surroundings*

Shaun Fur-of-Smoke: *Whines softly, but his wolven logic combines that a) the job must continue, and b) it's an Umbral illusion.. He dosen't linger at the sight and goes on*

Danni: *she looks up to the rat* Will you come with us, friend?

Auggy (ST type): *Meanwhile, the fool stops, looking at the fallen masonry for a very long time before dancing around The Peasant/Danni very closely, in an apparent attempt to levy the spirits of the two companions left. It's hard to follow him, but the glint of tears makes it easier*

Danni: ((Just got really quiet...)) *finally turns to leave with Shaun and the jester*

Auggy (ST type): ((Right then)) *The Fools capering begins to direct the outward, to a cobbled street. It's not too far before the decay can easily be seen. Cracks, missing stones filled with foul water, chipped sidewalks...a rustle can be heard....*

Shaun Fur-of-Smoke: *SHaun looks to the rustling, tensing*

Danni: *looks toward the rustle, herself*

Auggy (ST type): *Soft hissing...a knife slowly being drawn...shadows move, taking form.*

Danni: Make ready, young knight... *stepping away to give herself fighting room if necessary*

Shaun Fur-of-Smoke: *Shaun jumps at the chance, and his form blossoms into Chrinos.. A small form, looks lime a mixture of Nuwisha and Garou, his fur is brown with tan highlights. His breechcloth carries over, as does his medicine pouch. He bares his fangs in a growl and claws the ground, ready for the fight*

Auggy (ST type): *a soft snapping of cloth is the only warning given...time seems to stretch and slow, the keen edge of the dagger hissing through the air as it sails straight for The Peasant/Danni's chest...the Fool's capering carrying him to the worst posisble place...Shaun can easily see the flecks of greenish liquid as they are carried away from the dagger, making tufts opf smoke as they hit the cobblestone*

Shaun Fur-of-Smoke: *Growls out and tries to intercept the dagger from hitting either target*

Danni: *there is no time, not for her to move, nor for the warning she is about to call to reach her lips*

Auggy (ST type): *Shaun does manage, to intercept the blade. The dagger bites deeply, causing a searing visceral agony in his shoulder. His vision swims, and he can see two hulking brutish forms...or maybe four, with a whipthin man trailing them*

Shaun Fur-of-Smoke: *Growls in pain*

Auggy (ST type): *The Fool slips behind the attackers, tripping first one, then a second with a rather convienient staff. Weapon of opportunity, a handy thing.*

Danni: ((*LMAO*)) *the battle is joined, the woman shifting her form to Crinos and tearing among her enemies with claw and fang, standing guard over Shaun even as she fights*

Shaun Fur-of-Smoke: *Whine-growls as he falls to the ground, tries to claw through the haze in his vision at the forms*

Shaun Fur-of-Smoke: *Clears his mind from the pain, his natural wolf nature taking over as he barrels into the closest enemy, claws and fangs flying*

Auggy (ST type): *The ones left are quickly transforming into something resembling twisted, malformed crinos. Barbed whips loll from their mouths, as they seek a target*

Danni: *she allows one of the barbed whips to wrap around her wrist then uses that to yank the nasty creature within reach, tearing it's throat out with her free claw, mindless of the pain she's receiving in return*

Auggy (ST type): *The Fools' methods seem...a little offkilter. Using the staff to entangle a cloak and pull it over the head of one to blind him for the Peasant/Danni's claws, reversing the staff to stike the knee of the other one*

Danni: *she allows one of the barbed whips to wrap around her wrist then uses that to yank the nasty creature within reach, tearing it's throat out with her free claw, mindless of the pain she's receiving in return*

Auggy (ST type): *The Fools' methods seem...a little offkilter. Using the staff to entangle a cloak and pull it over the head of one to blind him for the Peasant/Danni's claws, reversing the staff to stike the knee of the other one*

Shaun Fur-of-Smoke: *Goes straight for the neck of the attacker he is on, shredding veins as he looks ahead at his next target*

Danni: *seems to have fought beside the Fool before, moving with his tactics to eliminate the foul things*

Auggy (ST type): *The one Shaun body-checked sails an incredible distance, literally shattering the crner of the building he landed against...the building itself creaks, before ponderously tipping and crushing Shaun's enemy under it*

Auggy (ST type): *the second one Shaqun attacks seems to nearly disappear in a misty cloud of red, as it was expecting a boy, not a Warrior.*

Shaun Fur-of-Smoke: *Growls, eyes nearly white from his single-mindedness.. He looks to see if any of the foul beasts are left as ichor and blood drips from his maw*

Auggy (ST type): *Battle is a sudden thing...prepare, train, make ready, for seconds of white-hot intensity...and thus iut is here...merely...6 seconds, of action, and the enemy is routed. This time. Shaun, The Fool/Puck, and The Peasant/Danni stand amongst the ruin of bodies, blood, and greenish fluids from somewhere...*

Danni: *her form shrinks back into homid, her clean rag clothing now marred with the stains of battle...she looks to Shaun, who took a blade for her and hers*

Danni: *her form shrinks back into homid, her clean rag clothing now marred with the stains of battle...she looks to Shaun, who took a blade for her and hers*

Shaun Fur-of-Smoke: *Shaun reverts to lupus with a whine, licking at the jagged wound in his shoulder*

Auggy (ST type): *The Fool seems all the more gleeful, capering and cartwheeling through the streets* ~We get our selves hence, and tell of this Cliath of wise judgement and battle Prowess, the King and the Queen will be so pleased to hear of this....

Shaun Fur-of-Smoke: *An ear perks up at the Fool's speech, still licking at the wound*

Danni: *she kneels beside Shaun, touching his wounded shoulder soothingly, gazing into his eyes* It is but one battle in a long, long war...but if this is the path my people are treading, I have hope...

Shaun Fur-of-Smoke: *Looks into Danni's eyes* ~WS~ I want to prove myself...

Auggy (ST type): ((*G* Always knew Danni was just a little fluffy softy at heart. ))

Danni: ((*L*)) You already have.

Auggy (ST type): *The fool laughs even more at this* He wants to prove himself....oh, this one will be a grand thing to watch...

Shaun Fur-of-Smoke: ~WS~ Is this my quest? I was told I need to bring a trophy back..

Auggy (ST type): *As the three converse...the scene seems to slowly crumble, and fade. Buildings fall apart, and dissipate into nothingness, until all that's left is the smoky ground of the Middle Umbra...*

Auggy (ST type): *The Rat that was in The Omega/Dave's pocket scampers up Shauns' leg*

Danni: *she smiles gently and touches his shoulder...healed now, except for the scar, showing through his fur* Is this not trophy enough? Remember this tale, young knight, remember your deed that gave you a scar...but saved others.

Shaun Fur-of-Smoke: *Wuffs and looks at the rat*

Auggy (ST type): *The chitterings and wuffles are clearly audible and coherent to Shaun* Just remember, the way of Rat is to survive, and help those capable of surviving to do so themselves. Do this, as you take your place with my Children.

Shaun Fur-of-Smoke: *He dips his head to the spirit-Danni, and begins to make his way towards where he left the real Danni*

Shaun Fur-of-Smoke: ~WS~ *To the rat* I promise. I will blend the teachings of Rat and Coyote.

Auggy (ST type): *The Rat remains parked on Shauns' shoulder all the way back*

Shaun Fur-of-Smoke: *Shaun limps to the Penumbra, eventually reaching Danni's shop*

Danni: *in the shop, our Danni has fallen asleep on the couch, like any worried mother, waiting for Shaun*

Shaun Fur-of-Smoke: *Slowly crossing over, Shaun wearily whuffs, plopping next to Danni on the couch, the wound smarting from the trip*

Danni: *jerks awake, blinking, not quite awake even as she realizes that Shaun has returned* Kiddo?

Shaun Fur-of-Smoke: *Soft tirrd whine as he lifts his shaggy head to look at Danni*

Danni: *sitting up* Yer back... *going over him with her hands to find injuries...then blinks as she hits the scar, she hadn't actually expected to find anything* Shaun???

Shaun Fur-of-Smoke: *Shaun slowly goes over the events in the Umbra, leaving only the representation of Dave out*

Danni: *has to chuckle at finding herself in his quest* Wow... I guess I'm flattered, but I feel a little like I got caught in tha Wizard of Oz...

Auggy (ST type): *The Rat of course, fills in the details that Shaun seems to forget, nuzzling Danni's ear as it does so*

Shaun Fur-of-Smoke: *Shaun looks confused, but too tired to press* ~WS~ I wanna sleep...

Danni: *she nods, hugging him* You sleep, kiddo...sleep all ya want. Ya earned it.

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