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 Do You Picture a Better Life?, Tag; Kikki
played by VanderRex117 posts
34 years
Electrician
134 points
@Kikki | @Yvonne | 430
odd scent lingering...

The popping up of a rogue was rather sudden, especially considering where, exactly, in the city that said rogue had appeared; first at the edge of the city, then the presence had swiftly moved inside of it, coming to a rest in Queens - a bit of an odd place for it to stop, and while he could have sent out someone else to bring them in for questioning... Ricco had been feeling restless as of late; he needed to go out and do something before he lost his mind over again in reaction to what had happened over the course of November.

When that rogue's presence had gone out into one of the parks within the New York area, Ricco got up from where he'd been lounging in the house to go get ready to leave, dressing in dark jeans, a plain white t-shirt, with a leather jacket over top to keep the worst of the cold out. Upon adding a pair of sturdy hiking boots, the Rex made his way from the Den, adding a helmet to his outfit so he could take his motorcycle out to the park that the feeling was coming from, which didn't take terribly long... thankfully.

Once he got to the park's outer edges, he parked the bike, attached his helmet to the handlebars, then marched into the forest with keys in hand. Although the boots were heavy, he moved in almost silence, his military training allowing him to move smoothly, swiftly, and without making a lot of noise.

In time, he found his way to where the rogue was wandering around, causing the Rex's head to tilt slightly while he watched. The other male was drifting around, touching the trees in an almost... reverent manner. As though seeing them for the first time.

Staying quiet so he could continue to watch for a little while, there was an odd scent in the clearing that tugged lightly at his attention, but he kept it on the periphery of his attention so he could keep an eye on the rogue male. He didn't look dangerous... a little underweight, actually, but if there was one thing he'd learned about lycanthropes, it was that looks could be dangerously deceiving.

Rather than snapping at him, Ricco took the more gentle approach, shifting his weight to one foot and lightly clearing his throat to get the younger male's attention, mismatched eyes locked on him, but made no indication he was going to attack him.

Not yet... maybe not at all, depending on how the situation wound up playing out.

played by YvonneYokai48 posts
1,213 years
Waitress
11 points

She had found so many things that day. The day she had been drawn to that home, to that basement. The day she had murdered vampires, drawn them dead into the sun to watch them burn for what they had done. The day she had carefully coaxed the huddled and forgotten form from his confines and carried him in her arms to her home. She had found life, again. A meaning, a reason to be alive. Until that point Daevika had been nothing but a drifter. An immortal being in the world of man, hidden among them with none the wiser. Quietly tasting the ones who came her way, but never bothering with anything more permanent. It wouldn't last, anyway. The moment they discovered what she was they, too, would turn on her, and Daevika would face iron, and darkness once more.

Eros was like something else, a new breath of life breathed into her old lungs and inflating her body. Within the first week she had fallen in love with the man, and not in the way one might expect. It was his gentle innocence and curiosity, the enthusiasm she was slowly beginning to pull out of him in every day life as she taught him what she could. His smile brightened her day, his laughter lightened her heart, and the happiness she could bring him with every small thing made her feel a purpose once more. Like a mother to a child, Daevika had taken to Eros, and it was with that same vehemence that she would protect him from harm.

While Eros moved about the small patch of trees, Daevika watched silently from above. Now one might think the form of a gigantic snake might be impossible not to see, but seeing as the branches were knotted together and thick in this space, one would hardly be blamed for missing it. Many feet off the ground she lounged, heavy lidded eyes half closed, a lazy smile on her face. She'd been drifting for the better part of an hour now, the end of her tail occasionally bouncing from tree to tree, wrapping about a branch, stripping the leaves from the entire length so that she could drop them on Eros head, who seemed all to happy for the raining projectiles and, in fact, had been collecting them for a while now. She had no idea why, and hadn't bothered to ask. If he wanted to fill his entire room with the things, she would let him, and she knew it.

She had just allowed her lids to droop completely over both wide black pitless eyes, when something cleared its throat. The reaction was sluggish at first, because the truth was she'd been so close to sleeping she'd not bothered to scent the area, and therefore hadn't the foggiest the sound hadn't come from her own charge. As her lids opened, her lips parted, and the length of slender tongue darted outwards to taste the air around her. Within a second of time her whole body was moving, the different body and presence as obvious as if she had come face to face with the person.

All at once her whole body dropped completely and suddenly from the canopy of the trees. As if the trees themselves were coming down it happened with a shuddering of trunks, cracking of branches, and a great shower of loosed leaves. The hit on the ground was thick and solid, one giant earth shaking 'thump' as twenty-seven feet of pure cobra body found purchase in the dirt. Every movement was smooth and precise, the length of her body undulated and rolled, sliding across the ground as it sought itself to coil, and from behind the mass emerged the upper torso of a woman, bare save the bra she had left on for Eros's sake. A set of completely black eyes peered from the woman's otherwise oddly innocent seeming freckled face, framing curls bouncing forward as she peeled her lips back slowly from her teeth and emitted an oddly deep rattling hiss in Ricco's direction.

"Eros, leave the leafs and come to me." Without hesitation she leaned her upper body forward, fingers reaching and grabbing for her Charge, urging him towards her and behind her as she shifted her figure to completely cover him from sight.

played by KikkiMember27 posts
22 years
56 points
Eros
I'm still having nightmares
Eros' entire life had turned upside down when he met Daevika for the first time. She had come into his life as the first person, out of nearly 22 years, who actually cared about him. The vampires in the Kiss who had held him captive had cared, but only to keep him alive to use again later. She actually cared about him. As a person, not a meal. Not as some lamb raised to slaughter, but as him. She coaxed him out from hiding, and carried him to her home where she tended his hurts and started to teach him about the many things he'd never seen or experienced. Today, it was a day to relax, and Dae had taken them to the park. He adored the park, feeling nature, being in it, made him feel safe. He didn't understand why, but it did.

Eros wandered through the forest in the park, never straying far from Dae and just....experiencing nature. The look on his face as he'd touch the bark of the trees with his fingertips was nothing short of awe and reverence for what was around him. He'd seen them in books before Dae took him to the park, but it was an entirely different experience to see pictures and to experience it firsthand. He was very happy as he wandered around, collecting leaves to put in his pockets and looking up with wide eyes when Dae would send the leaves fluttering down, a smile gracing a face that had not had any reason to smile before he met her. He'd given up on everything, on living, hope, all of it in that basement. It had withered and died within him, but thanks to her, he was learning, and his curiosity was encouraged and she was just so nice. Most women might give him a panic attack, but not her. The only time she did was if he woke from a nightmare of his past, or was having a particularly bad day. But none of these thoughts were in his mind at the moment as he just....enjoyed himself. A little under a month ago, he never would have thought that he would be able to enjoy anything. He hadn't even known what it meant to enjoy anything, but Dae had found so many new things to show him that he enjoyed. And don't even get him started on the food. In fact, he was thinking about food as he crouched beneath a tree, picking up leaves and putting them down again, only collecting the best he could find.

When he heard a noise behind him, a noise that didn't sound like Dae's snake form that he'd heard slithering around above him the whole time, he tipped forward in fright, spilling into the leaves in front of him and moving to rake them forward frantically, shoving fistfuls in his pockets as he stared up at the man who had approached, his eyes wide and chest starting to rise and fall faster, heart racing as fight or flight kicked in. Before he could act on it and just book it for home, Daevika came down in all her beauty and awesomeness. When she called to him, he wasted no time in scrambling to his feet to retreat behind her, leaves falling out of his pockets and off his clothes as he did so, a few spraying upwards from how swiftly he turned on the spot and bolted behind her, peeking around her with his shoulders hunching forward a bit, trying to make himself seem smaller. There was a small part of him that was curious about who he was, but he'd never seen someone with two eye colors like that before, and something inside of him was a mix of intimidated by this man and....well, he didn't understand the other feeling, so he pushed it back and ignored it. "Wh-who is he?" he asked Dae nervously, biting his bottom lip and tearing a leaf that he'd plucked off his shirt into shreds as he tried to slow his breathing back down after the initial first appearance scare cause man, he'd come out of nowhere!

@Yvonne @Vander | Outfit | Etc.
made by Leon Avur
played by VanderRex117 posts
34 years
Electrician
134 points
@Kikki | @Yvonne | 310
... that's not something you see every day.

The rustling sound from overhead drew Ricco's attention upward - just in time to see the large snake-type centaur drop from the trees, landing with a heavy thud, only to call the other male lion over to her. The tone was firm, but there was a quality to it that didn't sound like she was treating him like a slave or underling. Being of a similar nature, he could recognise protectiveness when he saw (or heard) it, and the strange creature that the other lion was hiding behind definitely seemed to be out to keep him from danger... even if Ricco wasn't even being threatening.

If anything, the Rex's stance remained calm and relaxed, hands in the pockets of his jacket while his mismatched gaze took in the scene, eventually chuckling quietly, more of a low rumble than anything else, then shifted his weight to his other foot. If he was worried, concerned, or surprised... it definitely wasn't showing, merely lifting one brow at the snake-woman before actually saying anything, though he was more answering the timid lion's question than anything else.

"I'm the Rex of the Nemean Pride," he explained simply, voice level and calm. "I detected a lion that wasn't a member, and I came to investigate what was going on." He paused for a moment, looking to the larger creature specifically, since she was the bigger threat here; the lycan cowering behind her wasn't likely to attack him with her around. "I had no intention of harming anyone; I'm only looking out for the safety of my group."

... okay, that was sounding ridiculously formal, inwardly rolling his eyes at himself, though he stayed composed to any and all onlookers, eventually shifting his weight to his other foot before he continued.

"My name is Ricco Rodriguez, by the way; sorry if I happened to startle either of you."

played by YvonneYokai48 posts
1,213 years
Waitress
11 points
Daevika remained where she was, her body in place between the stranger and her charge. Though it was difficult to see where those purely black eyes were trained, they were, in fact, focused completely on the male in front of her, narrowed faintly and watching his movements as her figure swayed just a bit from one side to the other, akin to a snake ready to attack. As Eros shifted and asked his question nervously, she shifted just a bit in like, her head turning just a bit, lips parting to answer, but there was an answer from the stranger instead, and this brought her head around to face him once more.

For a moment she just studied him in silence, before her lips parted once more. Not to speak, though, as instead her tongue darted out. Straight out, and back in, several times, head tilting to the side like a curious creature, eyebrows coming down over both black eyes as she considered what he was saying, and the scent itself she was capable of capturing in the air between them. For a long while there was no reply, no words, just a stare, just that tongue darting out, and back into her mouth.

"If he is who he says he is, he's precisely who I have been looking for." After a moment her body moved. The length of cobra shifted and undulated, and suddenly simply began melting away. Like flakes of dead skin, drifting from the bulk to disintegrate into nothing on the ground beneath her. Little by little it ate away at the full length of her body, all the way up her waistline. Where it ceased was as a pair of legs, hips, feet, all formed from the seemingly melting reptilion skin, the scales fading into a matching flesh tone of the rest of her body, leaving her standing on to bare feet, a hand lifting to brush aside the thick of her curls from now doe brown eyes.

"Well, Ricco Rodriguez." One eyebrow arched over one of those brown eyes, and she lifted an arm to drape it gently and protectively around Ero's neck, leaning in against him and rubbing his arm in a slow comforting manner. "I am Daevika..and this is Eros."


played by KikkiMember27 posts
22 years
56 points
Eros
I'm still having nightmares
Eros bit his lip as he peeked around Dae at the man. He looked a bit puzzled at first as the man said something about a rex and a nemean, whatever that was. It wasn't until Dae responded, reverting to human form in front of him, that Eros realized that those fancy words had meant that the man, Ricco, was the alpha of the lions. He edged closer to Dae as she put her arm around him, absently picking a leaf off of his shoulder to examine it, then put it in his pocket. "S-so....this is the alpha lion you were looking for?" he asked Dae for confirmation, her rubbing his arm the only reason he wasn't very tense. "I-Is that how he knew where I was?" he found the idea rather unsettling. He didn't know if he wanted to be able to be tracked or not.

He glanced up at Dae, then over at Ricco, wondering what was going on. "S-so um....now that you found me...wh-what are you gonna do?" he asked nervously, clinging to Dae a bit as his mind jumped to terrible conclusions. He had nothing to draw from other than the vampires, not for lack of trying but he didn't know enough to really know what to expect. "I-I promise I won't hurt a-anyone." he added, since Ricco had mentioned the safety of his pack of lions. The man said he wasn't there to hurt or startle them, and Eros ducked his head shyly to avoid looking at him further, lest Ricco make actual eye contact with him, which freaked Eros out when it happened. "I-is it okay if I keep collecting leaves while he talks Dae? Or would that be bad?" he asked her softly, still learning many of the social nuances one needs in order to function in society.

@Yvonne @Vander | notes | Etc.
made by Leon Avur
played by VanderRex117 posts
34 years
Electrician
134 points
@Kikki | @Yvonne | 520
rather timid fella, isn't he.

The dark Rex kept his cool while awaiting a reaction from the snake-woman, hands still in the pockets of his jacket, but chose to remain where he was standing; the last thing he wanted to do was entice violence over a simple, routine inspection of a potential rogue in Pride territory... though he'd admit that seeing a forked tongue coming out of a very human-like face was a little unsettling. It was only his military training that kept his discomfort from rising to make his heart beat faster, since she hadn't been violent yet.

More reason for why he was relieved to have taken the quiet, calm, polite approach to this situation.

A small smile, one of relief over anything akin to mischief, was offered in return to the newly-introduced Daevika confirming to the jumpy young lion that Ricco wasn't lying about who he was, even if it didn't seem to calm the younger male (Eros, he seemed to be called) as much as the Rex might have believed. Something was definitely amiss here, the other lion's anxiety hitting his emotional radar even harder than his presence as a rogue had done when it had first shown itself. Bizarre, as was his behaviour, but he had an inkling that the protective seeming snake-woman would be able to explain, where the young lion couldn't... or, perhaps, wouldn't.

The fact that he was stumbling over his words spoke of being very nearly terrified, and Ricco hadn't so much as coughed in his general direction, and so just opted for nodding in acknowledgement of the offered introduction.

"It's an capability of a leader, yes," he confirmed, voice only loud enough to be heard clearly; he had a sneaking suspicion that if he yelled, not only might it cause Eros to faint, but also make Daevika act on her protective stance, shift back to being half-snake, and do everything she could to keep Ricco away from the other male. "We have to make sure that any lion in our territory is a member of the Pride, or we run the risk of getting blamed for a rogue's potentially bad behaviour." The question made him chuckle softly again, glancing between the two across the clearing from him. "Well... I'd like for you to join the Pride. Not just for our safety, but yours as well; we look after our own, and will help you in any way we can."

Not that he went into detail about that just yet, idly wondering whether or not Daevika could answer any of his questions; with how anxious Eros seemed, he didn't want to keep him in such a situation for too long.

"If Daevika can answer a few questions on your behalf, I don't mind if you go back to leaf collecting," he answered the quiet query for himself, making sure they both knew that while he had some details that needed to be filled in, he was willing to be reasonable about it... plus, in the quiet of the park, it was difficult to not hear what was being said, even at the distance between them all.

played by YvonneYokai48 posts
1,213 years
Waitress
11 points
"Not Alpha, dear, Rex. Any lion can become an alpha with enough power. We talked about that." Her hand lifted from his arm and she gently tussled his hair with her fingers, smiling at him encouragingly as she leaned against his side. After a moment her hand dropped once more to his arm, returning to the slow and even sweep of her palm along the upper portion of it as she considered Ricco, instead. He seemed hard pressed to answer the questions presented to her, so she only perked an eyebrow at him and allowed him to do so. After all, he would have more information than she did.

Not that Daevika wasn't knowledgeable enough about the topic. The woman spent her life collecting information and data on species, this was her hobby, things that could be gleaned from other lycanthropes and found in books tended to fill the hundreds of journals she ketp in a neatly formed library in her room at the apartment. She'd only just begun the journal on merrow, a private bit of information as she had promised to keep the knowledge to herself. A promise she took seriously, especially with her past with mortals. That being said, it was often more informative from the source.

"You know, for such a handsome young man,you're awfully formal." She laughed, the sound free and easy as she gave Eros a soft pat on his back and leaned over to kiss his temple lightly. "Go collect your leaves, love. Anything he has a question about I can answer, you know that." After a moment she released him, nudging him off back to his quest for the fallen bits of greenery. "Find some nice colored ones, we can make an art project when we get home."

Daevika waited a moment, her eyes trailing Eros long enough to be sure he would return to his task, before she turned her head back around to view Ricco more critically. Heedless of her half naked state she hooked her arms behind her back, fingers linking together once more as she almost idly walked across the clearing itself to come closer to the man.

"I'm sure it isn't difficult to see, for anyone with any type of perception, that Eros is a special man. His circumstances are....unique." She said this calmly, almost conversationally, her head tipping to the right side. "Let me make myself perfectly clear before this discussion begins, Ricco. Eros is not in need of your protection, mine is more than enough. I am willing to take on this entire city, and more than capable of doing so, in his defense. That being said.." She paused, tipping her head skyward so that her curls bounced back from her face and she was viewing the sky quietly for a lengthy moment. "I know the laws of lycanthropes, and they tend to be strict anywhere you go. Rogues aren't something you can handle, correct? Neither of us have a want to go against the Pride, and, to be frank, all of the knowledge in the world cannot prepare Eros for what he is about to undergo...for the first time since he was turned many years ago."

Her head dropped once more and she glanced towards Eros to keep her eye on him, before turning brown hues back towards Ricco. "Ask your questions."


played by KikkiMember27 posts
22 years
56 points
Eros
I'm still having nightmares
Eros found it rather interesting that an alpha could sense other lions. How curious, one could never be truly lost if you were on the good side of the alpha. But, it also meant that you couldn't hide if he were angry at you as well, and that unnerved him. Still, despite his anxiety over the other males sudden appearance, Ricco seemed to be a nice enough guy. Or at the least, he hadn't shown himself to be hostile. Dae was a good judge of character, in Eros' opinion, by the simple fact that she had assumed human form. If she felt he was a threat, she would have stayed in her snake form. He tipped his head to the side as Ricco explained why he was there, trying to mentally calm himself down. He isn't a threat, he isn't a threat. He kept repeating that in his mind to calm himself, the main reason he'd been so anxious was mostly because he'd seemingly come out of nowhere. Males didn't scare him as much as females did and knowing that he was the same species as himself was also a bit reassuring. Though he couldn't help but wonder what Ricco thought he would need to be protected from, a flash of fear going through him as he jumped to conclusions. Did he know about the kiss of vampires that had held him hostage?! Or worse, did they survive and were looking for him?! The thought alone was nearly enough to give him a panic attack, but Dae would know, right? She killed them all. She told him that. So he had to believe her. His panic lowering as he leaned against her, he took a few deep breaths and it was only when he was given permission by Ricco and Dae to continue what he had been doing that he dared to venture from her side, going to a tree and pressing his forehead against the bark for a long moment to compose himself, feeling the safety that nature offered and letting it settle his mind.

Eros did not stray far from Dae, especially not know that someone else was there with them. He didn't want to take any chances. He glanced back at her more than once after the gentle nudge to return and promise to make something from what he collected, and a shy smile showed on his face as he moved to find the nicest leaves he could, pausing now and then to just watch nature around him, including at one point a bird that perched on a branch nearby him to sing, and a squirrel later that was looking for nuts among the leaves. He knew what they were thanks to Dae, though if anyone asked for anything specific he'd be at a loss. He was, however, immensely curious about the man, and so he strayed closer more than once to hear what they were going to talk about, though since he was also collecting leaves it didn't look outright like he was eavesdropping, not that he entirely knew what that meant.

@Yvonne @Vander | notes | Etc.
made by Leon Avur
played by VanderRex117 posts
34 years
Electrician
134 points
@Kikki | @Yvonne | 690
rather timid fella, isn't he.

He couldn't honestly say that he was put out to see the woman treating the other lion with such motherly affection - just looking at him the past few minutes had sent up several flags of warning in regards to how he'd been raised, none of them good. He couldn't say for sure, since he didn't know the boy at all, but he'd been in a situation where he'd had to rely on others in order to become the strong man he was now, so for Eros to at least have Daevika... well, it was a start.

Not that her comment had didn't have head tilting slightly in a curious manner, even a brow lifted in silent question; "young" wasn't exactly how he'd have described himself, but he supposed that since being a lycanthrope had slowed the ageing process to a slow grind, it was an easy mistake to make. That, or Dae was much older than she seemed, and he was just young by comparison... at this point, he wouldn't have been surprised either way, but also didn't let it rattle him; given everything he'd been through recently, he wasn't going to judge someone for being a little bit different.

It was difficult to miss the critical look in the woman's eyes, Ricco lifting a brow slightly as she sauntered closer, even if his eyes didn't stray below her waistline; there was obviously no interest from her, given that she seemed fully prepared to turn back into the massive snake-woman she had been when she first appeared at the first hint of danger. Ricco was intelligent enough to give her his full attention; he had no doubt that she could back up that claim of taking on the entire city in the other lion's defence...

But there were more things than physical safety that a Pride could provide, where Dae, while she could try, simply couldn't manage. Especially if what she said about the upcoming full moon being Eros' first shift since he was turned. Ricco knew that magic had to be involved, not only to keep him from shifting since being infected, but also mask his presence within the city... but to keep him human for so damned long?

"I'm perfectly capable of seeing that something about him is fairly unique. Don't get me wrong, it's not meant in an offensive way, but... he's so skittish, anyone with half a brain can see that he's been through much more than meets the eye," he agreed quietly, making sure that his voice didn't carry too far from where he and Daevika were standing. "I'm quite sure you're capable of levelling half the city to come to his rescue, should the need arise, but if you're as familiar with lycanthropes as you say, you should also know that he'll be drawn to his own kind; I only meant that if you aren't around at the time, we can make sure that no harm befalls him."

Whether or not she believed that, Ricco couldn't be sure... but he had to make sure that fact was out in the open; he doubted that she could always be around, but in her potential absence, the Pride would do everything within their power to make sure harm didn't fall upon him.

"As for rogues, for the group's safety, we don't allow rogues in the city," he agreed, shifting his weight again, "And if what you say is true, he can't be left alone when that happens. We don't know how his beast will react to suddenly being able to come to the surface after being suppressed for so long." The Rex could hope that it didn't end in violence, but to make sure that everyone in his Pride remained safe, he'd put Eros in his place, should he be forced to do so. Either way, he took a breath and let it out slowly, gaze rising to meet hers before he continued. "You've answered a couple already. I just... how did you come across him? I didn't even sense him, until recently."

It didn't make sense, but he wasn't going to jump to conclusions, either.

played by YvonneYokai48 posts
1,213 years
Waitress
11 points
"Don't give me that look." Daevika let loose a cadence of laughter, her eyes dancing as she turned her freckled face back towards the male not far from her now. "Compared to me I'd be willing to guess you are more an infant than you are simply young. Than again that might be a creepy assessment, since I would sleep with you without a seconds hesitation." Not that she was hitting on him, more or less stating a fact. Than again if it turned that way there was no telling what Daevika would do. She was, more or less, an in the moment type of woman.

"Mm." This was her only response to what he said as she turned about and tilted her head to watch Eros with a sharp yet soft gaze. "Eros is special in many ways. For one, his mind tends to be very child like." She pursed her lips against one another as she considered just what to trust the male with. Just because a man walked up and claimed to be the rex of the Pride didn't make it the utter and complete truth, however even Daevika could feel the power rolling off of him in waves, and that alone made it more of a conceivable thing. "Eros has spent the majority of his life within a basement, Mister Rodriguez. He requires ..special treatment."

As the male behind her continued to speak she slowly turned to face him once more, eyebrows arching upwards over both brown eyes. "Oh I'm aware, why do you think I was waiting for you? Looking, after a fashion, but admittedly not very hard. I figured you'd find him sooner or later." Her tongue trailed around the corner of her mouth as she laughed, giving her head a shake that sent her curls bouncing about her shoulders and face. "Trust me, if I'm not around, and harm falls on him, the Pride will be the ones who are blamed."

Not a threat, in fact it was said as conversationally as if she were discussing the weather, and with a small and soft smile on her face as she hooked her arms behind her back yet again, rocking back on her bare heels. "Yes, he can't be, and wouldn't have been, if I had to hold him down myself, but ideally the change would be handled by the Pride. I may know a lot, Mister Rodriguez, but I'm not the divine. I can't handle every situation that comes his way. For some of that he needs his own." She nodded, admitting freely where her own abilities end, no bragging or egotistical stroking happening in the least as she gave that much. His question brought her eyebrows up and she once more turned her head to watch Eros, her voice lowering to the point that even Ricco might have to move closer to hear her, this way she could be sure Eros wasn't privvy of it.

"I heard his cries. Pathetic small sounds of pain. You know when you hear an animal cry out and you know, in your heart, that they are in pain, that someone somewhere is hurting them, and you have to help?" She never broke eye contact from Eros, but her smile turned sad and her ever expressive eyes seemed to darken with the memory. "They must have lowered their wards for something, I had very little trouble getting inside the house. When I found him he was emaciated and caged, bleeding and broken and barely able to lift his head." She paused here, her eyes following Eros's figure across the field they stood in her smile now a frown and her expression darkening. "I destroyed them. Every last one. I drug their limp bodies into the rays of the sun and listened to their screams as they burst into flames. I tore heads from bodies, and hearts from chests, and I burned each piece of each one of them. I burned the house to the ground, lay waste to every memory they left behind so that they fade from all thought. Than I brought him home, and I began to teach him."

Daevika paused once more, turning her head to lock her eyes directly on Ricco's own gaze. "You need to understand this, Ricco. Eros is my son, in every right. There isn't a thing on this planet that will harm him, unless they go through me, first. That being said..." Her eyes drifted back towards Eros. "The Pride will fall under my protection as well, if they take him in."

[/QUOTE]
played by KikkiMember27 posts
22 years
56 points
Eros
I'm still having nightmares
Eros crouched by a tree, minding his own business more or less, though he did overhear bits and pieces of the conversation before Dae lowered her voice. He wasn't necessarily trying to hear, though he also wasn't attempting to avoid hearing anything either. He heard enough to know that he would likely end up needing to join the Pride. While the thought of all those strangers made him anxious, given that about 90% of the people he'd ever met in his life had tortured him for their amusement and drank from him until he could barely function it was no real surprise. He absently looked through the leaves at the trunk of the tree but frowned as most of them had practically turned to dirt. He stood again and looked around for more when he heard a noise near him. Not recognizing it, he turned his head this way and that, trying to find where it came from. It was some kind of chirping sound and he realized after a few moments that it was baby birds calling for food. He found the tree the nest was in and watched the parent bird come back and feed the babies, nodding to himself in satisfaction that they were taken care of and moving to start collecting some flowers for Dae, though he didn't realize some of what he picked were weeds like dandelions. He absently braided the stems together to make a bit of a chain, tucking more flowers in between the stems so it was just a rope of flowers.

He didn't realize in his hunt for flowers that he had wandered further away from Dae, which was good in that it made sure he didn't hear her talk about how she found him which might have triggered memories, but he also was almost out of earshot as well. He had just bent to get flowers again when something roundish and mad launched itself at him, making him squeal and backpedal frantically. It was a momma rabbit and she was not happy with him. Apparently he got too near her babies, and soon enough he was bolting full speed back to Dae with a rabbit on his heels. "Daaaeeeee!!!" he cried out as he ran, tripping on a root and scrambling back up again to hide behind her. "It wants to eat me!" he declared, pointing at the rabbit that had chased him towards them. It was already retreating at the sight of the odds, needing to return to her babies. Eros was still hiding behind Dae, not wanting the rabbit to see him. "I-is it gone?" he asked softly from behind her.

@Yvonne @Vander | notes | Etc.
made by Leon Avur
played by VanderRex117 posts
34 years
Electrician
134 points
@Kikki | @Yvonne | 825
... yep. timid.

He couldn't exactly help the expression that crossed his features when she called him young, as the sceptical part of his brain was severely rejecting the idea that this woman could actually be far older than she appeared. Being in the military had really beaten out any sense of wonder he might have once possessed, but with everything he'd been through since leaving it, he couldn't exactly deny that the presence of beings a lot older than him (not only Dae) was getting pretty undeniable.

"Well... aren't you forward," he commented in return to her own remark about being perfectly willing to sleep with him without a moment's hesitation. Flattering as it was, and he did note that she wasn't being flirtatious, but he also wasn't the type to sleep with a woman on a whim; it had taken quite a while for him to trust even Hannah enough to go to bed with her, though it had proven to be something of a relief for him, once it had happened. Trusting he was not, but at least he was getting a little better about it. Not that this was where his attention needed to be, focusing on Dae once again as she started to explain about what made Eros special compared to most, a little curious over what made his mentality child-like... only to have his expression darken when she expanded on that. As intimidating as his appearance might have been to some, Ricco had a soft spot for the innocent, and Eros fit the bill pretty closely. "Sounds like it."

He really wanted to roll his eyes when she said she'd been looking for the Pride, but not that hard, after taking Eros into her home and care, but resisted the urge; it was mostly his own knee-jerk reaction to fall back on sarcasm that had caused the urge in the first place, and she didn't deserve that kind of treatment. He chose, instead, to ground himself and come up with some sort of response that wasn't scathing, nor filled with ire.

Even if that proved difficult when she made sure to confirm, very casually, that the Pride would be held accountable if Eros was hurt while in their presence over hers.

"At least you can admit that much," he allowed, again shifting his weight while continuing to regard her quietly. It was nice to know that she didn't think herself above everyone else simply because she had learned quite a bit over the years... however many she'd lived before he'd met her. Still, as she continued, he took a half step closer so that he could her her clearly, the frown of curiosity quickly turning to one of subdued anger when she described how it was she'd found the other lion collecting leaves near by, even drawing a low, bass growl from somewhere deep in his chest... possibly starting in the soles of his feet somewhere. "I doubt I'd have done any less, in your shoes.

"I couldn't condone that behaviour either." Huffing softly, his head shook slightly, as if to rid himself of that silent rage broiling just beneath his skin, his lion starting to pace within him in a protective manner; whether or not Dae had lain claim to Eros, there was something within Ricco that had just done the same thing, and would have ripped anyone who messed with the younger male to tiny, bloody pieces long before Dae could even hope to get her hands on them to do the same herself. "I don't see why we wouldn't accept him; he's not a threat to us. In fact, he's more of a threat to himself until he learns how to handle his beast, and we'll be perfectly happy to help him do that."

He was about to say more before the lion in question screamed for the woman in front of him, nearly tripping over his own feet when he got up after tripping over something else to get to Dae faster, his taller form hiding behind her as he pointed at a rabbit near by and declaring that it was going to eat him. While comical in its own right, it just reinforced the fact that she hadn't been lying when she said that Eros had a very childlike mentality, and knowledge of the world at large.

"I see what you meant," he admitted quietly to Dae, hands finally slipping from his pockets so that he could fold his arms across his chest instead. Eros' anxiety was hitting his emotional radar hard, which led him to letting his dark lion reach out to the other male's, helping to calm the beast within him, hopefully making the younger lion to relax faster. "The last thing I want to do is hurt him myself; if I can help him to learn and gain confidence to face the world, myself and my Pride will do what we can for him."

played by YvonneYokai48 posts
1,213 years
Waitress
11 points
We met for a Reason
Either you're a Blessing
Or you're a Lesson'
Daevika smirked at the remark, her shoulders lifting and dropping smoothly. "I've been alive entirely to long to not have a degree of bluntness about my person. " She answered matter of factly, her eyes sweeping over his form , not so much as if she were checking him out as she was very obviously assessing him fully. Something she'd likely do several more times as she considered the decision to trust this man with who she was quickly becoming to think of as a son.

"I'm a prideful creature, Ricco Rodriguez, but I am far from perfection. I am free with admitting where I all short, and in this instance I can offer knowledge but nothing in way of experience." Though she refused to relinquish on protection. She had very little doubt she could wreck the Pride itself if she had a mind of. She had tricks up her sleeve that none of them would likely be remotely prepared for, and it rendered pretty much everyone useless in a fight when used. She could waltz into their home and right back out...not that she wanted to, but the point was she had protection in spades to give to her son, she didn't really need anything there. NEither did he....but he did need his own kind. Daevika had been without hers for some time, and it had taken a toll on her own mind and spirit.

It was than that Eros screamed her name. Her reaction was very sudden and fast. One moment Daevika was standing there assessing Ricco and the next her body rocketed forward. The transformation wasn't like a lycanthropes, there was no popping of bone or painful stretch of body. It was a sudden shoot out, from waist down, as if the human form simply, and within moments, had begun elongating and shifting. All twenty-seven feet of snaked lurched towards Eros, instinctively curling the length of a tail around him.

Of course what she faced down had her suddenly erupting in soft laughter, her hands coming up to cup her face as she pushed it down and shook her head, her body relaxing as the coils of snake laid out lazily instead of in the curled position it had been in, bending somewhere around where one would be able to imagine human hips would be so that she could 'sit' on the ground, her hands gathering Eros to hug him to her.

"Yes, dear. It's gone, and it couldn't eat you if it wanted to. It's just a rabbit. Small, fluffy, and usually rather more partial to eating carrots than it would be to nibbling on you." She poked his side lightly with a bright smile, her entire face transformed from the critical old "wise woman" to one of soft gentle happiness as she ruffled his hair gently. "You probably got to close to her babies and she was trying to protect them....I bet if you snuck over there very quietly you could even see a tiny little baby rabbit." Her eyes drifted to Ricco as she laid a soft kiss to Eros temple, before releasing him as she settled in her 'seat' on the ground.

"He requires special treatment, Ricco. You have to understand that. Yelling at him, threatening him...it won't work like it will with your other members. He needs to be taught like you would a child...and you wouldn't threaten a child." She watched Eros for a moment with an audible small sigh. "But I will trust you with him, because he needs you...and with the trust of him comes my protection of the Pride." She turned her eyes back to him, her eyebrows lifting. "You may call on me for anything the Pride needs, provided he is cared for properly."

played by KikkiMember27 posts
22 years
56 points
Eros
I'm still having nightmares
Eros shouldn't have been so freaked out by something so much smaller than himself, but when something charges you to defend its young, no matter how small it is there's always that small flash of fear as you stare into the fearless face of a mother. In Eros' case, the fear expanded rather quickly and caused him to run back to his own mother, of a sort. He hadn't actually used the term yet, as it was rather new to him, but if he thought about it, she certainly fit the bill for a mother.

It wasn't until he was safe behind Dae's coils of snakeness that he tried to work on calming himself down. He didn't have to worry too much about anything happening if he got too freaked out, as he'd been forcefed the potion that suppressed his beast not long before he was rescued, but at the same time well, he didn't need to become a hyperventilating sobbing mess now did he? A blush darkened his cheeks as Dae explained that it was a rabbit defending its young and likely wouldn't have really hurt him even if it tried. She added that he might be able to see baby rabbits if he was quiet and that distracted him a bit, though he suddenly frowned and looked at Ricco. He had felt a strange press of calm and, since Dae didn't have any ability to do that, it meant that it had to have come from the only other person in the area. While yes, he was more calm now, he wasn't sure how he felt about how it happened, and he stared at Ricco for a long moment, looking a bit confused as he tried to puzzle him out.

He was distracted again, man was it easy to distract him, when Dae kissed his temple and he decided to go retrieve the flowers he dropped, walking off with a big show of being more quiet and tip toeing as he went to his flowers to gather them up and return to be near Dae, sitting close enough that he could touch her scales as he made a long chain of flowers for her, weaving them in nice and close so you couldn't see the stems. He looked up curiously when Dae said that she was going to trust him with Ricco. What did that mean? He looked over to the other man curiously, waiting to see what happened next.

@Yvonne @Vander | notes | Etc.
made by Leon Avur
played by VanderRex117 posts
34 years
Electrician
134 points
@Kikki | @Yvonne | 460
we'll do what we can.

A "degree of bluntness" was putting it mildly, and he'd only known Dae for less than ten minutes. It was fairly apparent, even to one who wasn't known to be perceptive, though Ricco didn't fall into that category; he'd learned long ago that not paying attention could lead to getting himself, or others, killed due to simple negligence, an that wasn't on his list of things to do, nor had it ever been. He knew damned well that although he wasn't terribly familiar with most of the Pride, he was a leader now; it was his job to look after them.

Negligence was not an option.

"I'm glad you can admit that much," he admitted, and wasn't lying about that, either; given the way that Eros was regarding her, and how he was treated in return, he had no doubt that Dae would do everything within her power to keep him from harm, nor hesitate to hold anyone else responsible, should the worst befall him while the younger male was in the Pride's care.

Not that he could say much more on the subject, as Eros came running back to Dae's side, exhibiting the very behaviour he'd already suspected, and it was only confirmed in the most obvious way... even if what had scared him wasn't really much to be concerned about, the Rex eyeing the mother rabbit in silent amusement while Daevika talked Eros down to a calmer state before refocusing on him instead.

"No, I would not yell at a child... nor anyone, if I can refrain from doing so," he replied, finally lowering his arms to his sides again to resume his casual stance. "I just have to make sure the rest of the Pride understands that he's not to be treated as a doormat, simply because he's so child-like in his mentality.

"As well as make it perfectly clear that they'll have to deal with me if they try." Not that he wasn't slightly surprised that Dae was willing to extend her protection to the whole group, but either way, all he could do was nod before he spoke. "I appreciate that. I will make sure we do whatever it takes to keep Eros safe while he's with the group."

That was pretty well all that he could promise just then, though he said nothing (yet) of the humans that were due to move in as well; from what he understood, the pair were known and trusted by two of the other lions, so there didn't seem to be anything to worry about.

Once Eros calmed down completely, Ricco bid the odd pair farewell to head back to the Den, glad that things went fairly well... or, at least, ended without unnecessary violence or blood shed.

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