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Feralmoon Grimtotem

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Full Name: Feralmoon Grimtotem

Nicknames: Feral, 'Moon, Moons, Dog, Cow.

Date of Birth: April 20th

Age: 25 (Tauren equivalent there of)

Race: Tauren

Gender: Female

Hair: Black

Skin: Fur color is black as well.

Eyes: Violet-purple

Height: Approximately 7’ 6”

Weight: 430 lbs.

Place of residence: Takes up occasional residence in Winterspring, however purposefully neglects to put her "roots" down in one place.

Place of Birth: Darkcloud Pinnacle, in the Thousand Needles.

Known Relatives: Grimtotem tribe, Clearwater Grimtotem (her identical twin sister, a Druid), Dreamtreader Grimtotem (younger brother, deceased), her parents may still be living but they tend to stay at the Moonglade. Ursuan Briarclaw (mate) and Sunna (daughter, no deed name or clan name as of yet)

Religion/Philosophy: Worships the Earthmother and believes herself to be a defender of Her, a warrior, a healer, whatever the Earthmother might ask.

Occupation: Shaman, midwife, healer, warrior.

Group/Guild affiliation: Ignis Divine

Guild Rank: Divine Slayer

Enemies: The Grimtotem tribe, The Scourge, Warlocks,

Likes: Rabbits, leatherworking, scrimshaw.

Favorite Foods: Clover, kodo

Favorite Drinks: She cannot tolerate alcohol very well having never been truly exposed to it, and prefers to drink water.

Favorite Colors: Blue, and Purple.

Weapons of Choice: Feralmoon prefers the weight of an axe or a hammer, loving the heft of a weapon she can put force behind. Staves and anything blunt and heavy she seems to wield well.

Dislikes: Forsaken , people in general though she’s attempting to change, kodo, the sanctimonious. As intense as she regards her relationships with her kith and kin it's unsurprising that she's incredibly territorial and can be jealous over rather ridiculous things. Masochism is also a bit of a pet peeve of hers, albeit a bit of a hypocritical one as she pushes herself often beyond her physical limits.

Hobbies: She leatherworks as a profession and as an enjoyable pastime. One of her abilities as a shaman that allows her to shift into a ghostly wolf gives her a great amount of pleasure, she oftentimes wanders around in her ghostwolf form, feeling a greater sense of personal freedom in it.

Physical Features: Feralmoon was trained from birth to be a warrior, a Tauren woman in her prime she’s of a tall, and rather immense physical stature, her musculature pronounced from years of physical training bordering on "muscle-bound". Her eyes however are characteristic purple of the Grimtotem and her fur is almost obsidian black. She is also Red-Green color blind, meaning she sees them as dull browns and grays if anything, this also results in limited depth perception.

Special Abilities: Feral can see spirits of the dead and of nature on a normal basis. She’s a bit like a necromancer in that regard, being truly able to speak with the dead. However it has some very warped affects on her perception of reality.

Positive Personality Traits: Loyal to a fault, loving to those she cares for, and a fairly good listener so long as the topics stay within her vision of "propriety".

Negative Personality Traits: Racist, prejudiced against many groups and organizations, judgmental and brutally honest, Feralmoon is not particularly pleasant to be around before getting to know her. Even so, when she is under great duress or feels emotionally damaged she tends to be even more obvious in her ire.

Played by What Famous Person: Chyna

Theme Songs: Disturbed - Prayer and Stabbing Westward- Save Yourself , Breaking Benjamin- Breathe

History: Feral was born to Magena and Stonetalon Grimtotem, both druids to their village and is one of a pair of identical twins, the other being Clearwater Grimtotem. The two were separated when it became apparent to the village elders and in particular their Crone that she was not destined for the same path, and while Clearwater was trained in the druidic arts with her parents elsewhere, Feralmoon was left behind to study as a warrior after her skill in combat was shown on a hunt where she slaughtered a Centaur. Not too long after that, the Crone spoke up at the ritual to recognize her as a warrior and demanded that she be trained in the elemental arts.

The male who had been courting her, and also the leader of the warband tried to speak against the old woman and was instead berated and scolded into submission, earning Feralmoon's ire in turn when he did not come to her defense. She protested her training in certain ways until, after a battle leaving her barely alive, convinced her that leading her people spiritually did not necessarily defy the warrior she was meant to be. Since then her mentor was slaughtered in another raid, and Feral was accused of betrayal when she let war prisoners (members of Ignis Divine) escape. She fled with them, and was then trained in Horde warcamps in order to verify she was not among those indoctrinated by Magatha's mad schemes. Though she does not agree that Cairne Bloodhoof has the right to speak for the Tauren as a nation, she is still quite the Horde loyalist, believing a bit pragmatically that if nothing else, the wars may weed out the forces separating the Tauren from dominion over most of Kalimdor, and would certainly trim the Forsaken forces to a reasonable number so that when the fighting ends and the world is restored...there will be hope then for the goals of the Grimtotem.

Feralmoon tracks quite alot by the moon and stars and is usually quite concerned with their progress, especially in places she's not used to. She's set herself a new goal as of late: chart the celestial bodies in the sky in each place she spends any major portion of time over the course of the year. After about November having finished Thunderbluff's a while before, she started on Silvermoon's and now has what looks like a container for a spell scroll or a map attached to the belt at her hip. She's somewhat embarrassed about this sort of thing as it pins her as a bit of a superstitious old bat so she does not try to publicly announce it.

When the evening hits it's darkest, Feralmoon can be found looking up, at the night sky, with various tools, including some of her own device to make her charts precise. If there is anything Feralmoon truly dislikes it's imprecision and irresponsibility in her line of duty, whether voluntary or imposed.

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HA! This one I met some time ago in the hills outside of Revantusk Village along with a lovely Blood Elf Mage. I was curious on why a Tauren was so far from Mulgore, but since she was following this Elf I assumed it was her herder leading her out to new pastures.

Or conversation didn't consist of much. She swore at me in Tauren (at least I assume it was cursing) and I made comments in Gutterspeak. Ahhh the memories.

I may have to find this one again soon, if not for the value of amusement.

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Her story left me with a sense of promise in the brotherhood of the Horde. I named the red dragonhawk that Lovely gave me, 'Brother' in honour of the story.

We too can do amazing things if we all think of one another as 'Brothers.'

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I gave her a really nice gift for winter's veil. I found it in my pocket and I think it had been sitting there all year long. I think she really enjoyed it.

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I've only met her briefly, though she seems to be quite kind-hearted, though bitter. In many ways, she's similar to the Sin'dorei.

I do hope to meet her at some point in the future, perhaps to speak at greater length.

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I've met Feralmoon once, in that short time I learned many things of her. Her tail is sad, her path was a hard one but these are what have shaped her to become a wise one among our people I believe.

Winds be at your back Feralmoon, I hope to see more great things from you.

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She has some kind of feud with Cess. I tried to get the shaman to give her a second chance (or at least not antagonize her), but she seems as thick-headed as my Cess is.

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I met this woman two days ago, along with her companion Diomades. I had apparently met at least him in the past, but there are no memories there. Feralmoon, in her own way, seemed stronger than the shaman. I could tell by watching her that she has an incredible amount of strength and even more patience. I hope to be friendly with this one.

No, not that kind of friendly. But a friend, nonetheless.

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Feralmoon. Dog. Bitch. Lots a names fo' her, but names don' be dat impo'tant. Even if de last one is de name I call her by. She like ta try an' prove how scary she be, try an' intimidate me. Lot of people do dat, no big deal. Wedda o' not she be able ta really impress me remains ta be seen.

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She is tense and serious. Maybe passionate is a better word but I do not want to give you any ideas... She answered a lot of my questions about shamanism and only got frustrated near the end so I think she is very patient.

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Seems as stubborn as Cessily, an prolly almost as racist. Like it or not, we forsaken be part of dis world now, time ta start seein' it as such. So next time I meet 'er, she bettah not be so vocal in 'er distaste.

As ta 'er war with da elf girl, both of em need ta just shut it and 'ead da othah way.

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Samhaine- What. A. Cow. Never lets me have time with my HUSBAND! *fumes* But she is an honest and dear friend none the less... I think I am going to rub a few thistles into her cloak. *flicks ears*

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I would dearly loathe the day I ever had her on the opposite side of the battlefield. She's a fearsome lady-Tauren that carries herself in a way worthy of my respect.

I did enjoy the story about Grandmother Spider quite a lot. Maybe one day there will be another session for telling tales.

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With some more chance meetings, I'd say that I've gotten the opportunity to get to know this woman better.

I've found that she's quite strong-willed, yet somewhat playful. She may seem like she's extremely serious when you meet her for the first time, but treat her with respect, and you'll get the same in return. I have yet to run into a point to where she treats me, personally, with disdain or even disrespect. She seems to have a small amount of curiosity about the elven culture, and questions I'll be more than happy to answer.

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"Feralmoon... about as complex a lock that you'll ever find around a person, but still one of the few people I trust and will open up to, although it's hard to get her to do the same. So, I try to get her to loosen up, and end up making her blush! Cracks me up. The fact she's with Dio makes it even more entertaining. Love ya, Feral."

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**Feral's backstory--will be posted in sections--Was started in a topic in the RP section however it fits here seeing that it's not actual RP**

Feralmoon flicked the novice beads in the braid back over her shoulder and snorted, jangling the metal ring through her nose as she hefted her mentor's staff onto one shoulder and peered out into the mist filled valley between one of the last "needles" near the Nightelf encampment on the edge of her tribe's territory.

Clad in little but a kodo skin breechclout, leggings and binding straps of leather over her chest, she wasn't exactly being "stealthy", but it hardly mattered out here. The Needles were formidable to say the least and the threat presented by both Alliance, and Grimtotem alike generally warded off all but the most fool-hardy adventurers and some of the more determined goblin caravans.

Behind her, the elderly crone hunkered down in her hides and furs, clutching them around her with increasingly arthritic fingers. After a few moments she croaked to the younger female crouching like a caged black panther at the edge of the rockformation.

"Feralmoon, come child."

Feral's head snapped up and she turned to give her mentor a rather wild look, her hair tussled by the morning breeze. She shifted to stand, shook the dew from her fur and walked toward the crone, extending her hand down to help the old woman up before placing the venerated one's hand over the staff and released it.

Silent as per her usual Feralmoon waited for the crone to cross the rather precarious bridge, automatically bracing it to bear the old one's weight before eventually crossing herself. Her final Spirit-Quest began today. Soon she would be sitting in the spirit lodge inhaling the incense wafting from the flames and would prepare herself to receive the vision that would lead her to carving her fourth totem...

Her totems...yet another thing that set her apart as a "bad omen" in this tribe. A twin. Insane. And now her totems. Rather than carving each individual one, she instead had set herself to carving them into the same piece of wood, and unto itself was wholly small and rather unimpressive, three faces, one laughing, one crying, one grimacing fearfully and the last....missing, the flat side blank.

She felt a certain sense of dread curling like a blind cave eel in the pit of her stomach. If she finished the totem like this...She wondered vaguely how long the tribes forced hospitality would last when the Crone was gone. She had to find a way to strike fear...respect into the hearts of her peers or she'd be dead within a moon. Slowly she followed her mentor from the hill top, back toward their home peak.

Evening had fallen.

A wordless curse tore itself from Feralmoon's throat as her nosering was wrenched from her nostrils. She cried out again as she felt someone drive their knuckles into her inner thigh. Three times through the gauntlet had prepared her for this sort of abuse, but it didn't make it any less painful. Pushing her weight forward she fell onto one hoof and then finally brought her other forward, and then yet another, and finally dropped into a full on charge taking a breath.

When she'd cleared the hall of warriors all of them, punching, hitting, abusing her with all they had, she dropped into a crouch and bared her chest, throwing her fists out to the side and letting out a bellow from deep in her gut, roaring with rage, frustration and at the heart of it triumph.

I've surpassed you all, you bastards. Bow to the will of the Earthmother.

Kuruk, the spirit of a male ancestor, how old she didn't recall stood proud behind her as she stood bleeding from the nose, from a cut below her eye, her lip and she puffed her bare chest and he bellowed as she did.

"I am Feralmoon, daughter of Stonetalon!" she called out, spraying the nearest brave to her with blood.

Unflinching he waited for her to finish introducing herself.

"I am Feralmoon, daughter of Magena!"

She paused again, looked out over them. She barely spoke three words to the majority of her tribe. They knew her only as the child who had occupied the warrior chieftain's hut up until she'd been taken under the Crone's wing.

"I am Feralmoon! SHAMAN of the Grimtotem!"

She threw her head back in exultation as the spirits jumped at her feet and greeted her warmly with her acknowledgement. Brother flame jumping up to kiss her face as the fire of the torches around her wreathed her form briefly and the wolves in the chasms below the Darkcloud Pinnacle added their voices to hers.

The time had come.

Makya, the warrior, the Eagle-hunter as he was known, took her elbow shortly after she had finished her introduction. He was chieftain here, and her father for many years before the Crone had taken her from his side. His expression this night was unreadable, tight, almost pinched. She knew from many years experience it meant that there was something on his mind as he led her to the Spirit-hut.

She'd given up asking him anything the night he'd given up on her.

Still silent, she stood waiting for him to part the beads to let her into the hut as was custom. She would touch no Earthly items this night. She was a Spirit-being. In communion with the Earthmother at all times. Even now she saw the spirits of his long dead mother Mahala, probably the only tender Grimtotem female there ever had been, lingering over her sons shoulder, a hand resting there. Feralmoon only felt her heart harden that such a "strong" warrior would need such aid in talking to someone so much smaller than he.

"Feralmoon...time grows short. My troupe may be called away soon in aid to the Elder Crone. I wish to ask you before time grows too short."

Her expression soured, and she kept her eyes focused on the light beyond the door way where the Spirits of her Fore-bearers danced in the firelight, singing to her, calling for her to join them.

"You will not find another more worthy or another better suited, Feralmoon. My wish is that you will be the mother of my sons."

Her eyes narrowed and the hands she held loosely at her sides clenched in pure unadulterated fury. Seeking reconciliation after abandoning her to the clutches of that ruthless Crone who sat just inside was almost worse than if he had simply thrown her to the ground and raped her. She choked down a snarl, gripped one hand into a fist, wound it back and before he could move out of the way drove it into his face, uncaring of how it threw her ceremonial dress into disarray or how it threw him to the ground.

"Makya Grimtotem, son of Natane Grimtotem, I swear on my name, on my honor and on my blood as Shu'halo that I will never bear your sons. I will never bear the child of another Grimtotem so long as I live. Earthmother help me." She fairly growled it at him.

Hawking roughly she spat in the ground next to his hoof and before he could get up, swept through the beads on the door to the Spirit hut, confident that neither the Crone, nor Makya would say anything about her touching them.

Crossing the threshold into the “house of spirits” Feralmoon looked to Abeytu, her rage written in every feature. At this point the old woman was used to her “wild moments” as she called them. The crone smiled demurely and gestured to the space she’d cleared for her pupil earlier.

“Makya would make a good father…” the old-one croaked, gesturing lightly out the door to the retreating shadow of the male.

He’d picked himself back up. Feralmoon snorted and spat into the flames before throwing herself onto her backside, stirring the earth spirits beneath her into protest. She snorted again, and shook her head out a bit like a canine might.

“He is weak. I need no one, want no one. I am the Earthmother’s consort.” Feralmoon rumbled irritably as she folded her legs awkwardly and shifted to rest her elbows on her knees.

Closing her eyes, the younger female attempted to focus.

“Such a wild spirit. They named you well, Feralmoon.”

The crone smiled as Feralmoon grunted in response and grumbled something akin to a dismissal. After a long moment the old-one observed silently as her counterpart slipped into her trance. Clairaudience was something the old-one envied Feral for. It took very little for her to focus in on what the Ancestors were saying. She admired the work she’d done on her pupil while she sat in a sort of repose.

Having denied herself any pleasure imaginable it was hard to picture Feralmoon as anything but a Shaman, Abeytu thought almost bitterly. The child hadn’t been very outgoing to begin with. Having had her only link to the living severed when her parents had shuttled little Clearwater from the village at Abeytu’s own insistence had seen to that. She recalled the incident with an acrid taste of bile at the back of her throat.

She did what she had to, ensuring the survival of this village atop one of the many pinnacles of rock that made up the Darkcloud spire. Her mate died long ago, leaving her childless and unwilling to take another, and so the Tauren woman moved into the stage of Changing Woman in her life, and grew older, forced to make a decision. The two girls were born the night of a full moon, when the stars aligned with the planting of the few sacred herbs they were able to cultivate on that plateau.

Both powerful druids Abeytu expected no less from the child Magena was supposed to be carrying, and sure enough when Clearwater slipped from her mother’s womb and into the world, the Earthspirits cried her as a Druid. The mark of the beast, a small paw print, was already written in birthblood upon her forehead. No one had suspected the second babe, until Magena tried to stand and was overcome with another labor pain. Feralmoon emerged after long fought and difficult hours and what was left of the placenta clung to her tiny face like a death shroud, her chest failed to rise or fall.

Even a Grimtotem mother wept for a still born, and Magena did so and viciously for her failure to give the Earthmother a stronger daughter.

The Ancestors gathered around the babe, and whispered as they prepared to take her. She wasn’t breathing, and the veil was an ill omen about the health of babes to begin with. Abeytu, the Crone, however was never one to suffer failure. She pulled the pall from the child’s face, and the Ancestors looked on in interest as Feralmoon gasped her first breath with the assistance of the old one. With that, the girl child let out a loud and powerful wail, announcing to the world that she was alive and would be staying that way. The Ancestors smiled in an enigmatic fashion as the spirits of the Earthmother leaped up to greet the child.

That day forward the twins were inseparable, Clearwater clung to her twin, and Feralmoon to Clearwater. Neither of them had learned to speak by the time they could walk, or speak in a language that anyone understood but the two of them, despite the best efforts of the tribesmen to try the “divide and conquer” approach.

She spent long hours sitting by her sister or her mother staring at nothing and babbling nonsense into the darkness as if she were caught in a rapt conversation. Magena and Stonetalon were convinced the girl was mad, perhaps the pall having caused damage to her mind since she’d been stillborn to begin with and certain that Feralmoon was holding Clearwater back, hindering the child’s progress.

They came to Abeytu one night and the aging one had finally come to her decision.

Feralmoon would stay in the Needles, and Magena and Stonetalon would take Clearwater to the Moonglade to be trained properly as one who walked the Wild Path. They didn’t hold much hope for their second born, that much was clear. At the age of four Clearwater was intelligent and managed to learn a little bit of Taurahe, however Feralmoon it seemed refused to speak it at all.

Abeytu called Makya, Eagle-Eyes as they called him, into the hut to discuss what would be done with the girl. She was too young to take on any sort of training, and it was too soon to truly understand the depth of her retardation.

“Leave her out in the bloody gorge!” Makya barked in Stonetalons’ face.

“And anger the Ancestors? The Crone herself speaks of their reaction to her! She’s an ill omen but one that must be treated with care Makya! If you bring the wrath of the spirits down on this village by killing that…that…idiot, I would not be surprised if they all decide to leave you in that gorge and let the hyenas do with your carcass what they will!” Magena growled at the warrior from her companion's side.

“How dare you…” Makya started.

“Silence! All of you!” Abeytu’s anger had risen past the boiling point, and she was about ready to leave all three adults out in the gorge for the blisterpaws, “Makya, you seek to secure your position as chief with this tribe; take the girl. She is spirit blessed and she will curry favor for you with the Ancestors. Stonetalon, take your wife and Clearwater and get gone. You’ve dallied long enough on this matter.”

The larger rather feral looking Druid looked to the Shaman with relief in his features. He nodded and took Magena’s arm and went out into the darkness beyond the hut. Makya however remained behind, glaring daggers at the old woman.

She stood, “Don’t give me that look Eagle-Eyes. I was there when you wriggled your way out of your mother’s belly. I won’t hesitate to turn you over my bent old knee and cane you.”

Makya snorted. “What do you think I of all people can do with an idiot child, Abeytu? Spirits, have you seen her? She sits in corners gibbering to the empty air.”

“You forget the Earthmother is in everything, Makya. Perhaps she’s speaking to her. It’s not our place to judge, and it’s not our place to kill her either. The spirits have made that perfectly clear to me.”

“I think you hear what you want to hear from those spirits.” Eagle-Eyes grumbled.

His vision exploded in a sea of stars as Abeytu’s staff connected with his temple and he stumbled to the side. He gripped his face, humbled instantly with the hit, and shied away from the snarling Shaman.

“You want to question me, Makya? I am still Crone, spirit speaker, of this village, and if you have a problem with it you can be the one to leave the council. Do you understand?”

He nodded silently.

“Good…You’ll take the girl. I don’t care what you do with her so long as the spirits are satisfied.”

He nodded again, still silent.

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Outside a mournful wail and a sort of deaf keening rang out through the canyons and gullies of the Thousand Needles accompanied by the rumble of thunder in the distance. Stonetalon came back to the hut, moments later, dragging a sobbing young female behind him, the same sounds echoing behind him from the girl’s twin. He threw her to the floor of the hut, ignoring her grabs for his shins.

“Ahh-oo!” Feralmoon cried at her father, pleading with him nonsensically as she clung frantically to his leg.

“Get off! Get off you little fool!” He swatted at her head and she let go, half laying, half-sitting on the floor and weeping as she looked up at him, her bright eyes searching his as he glanced down at her.

He was quiet for a long moment. “Pathetic.”

With that Stonetalon turned away from his second-born daughter and walked out of the hut and into the first of the raindrops before moments later it turned into a torrent. Feralmoon finally gave up the will to stay upright and collapsed in a sobbing heap to the floor, crying and screaming her fury, confusion and raw grief into the dirt of the mesa’s top echoing the fury of the Earthmother outside.

Makya winced, his soft heart showing through the stiff exterior. He stood there, stiff and almost waited for the inevitable realization that would come over the youngling laying there on the floor. She eventually calmed into breathing in shaking hiccups, her energy sapped by the struggle against her parents and then the inevitable fight to try to convince her father, deaf to her words, to stay.

Slowly the small female pulled herself up into a sitting position. Her hair was long for the moment, left unbound around her shoulders and face, effectively hiding it from view.

The Crone looked to Makya who seemed half-fearful, half-sympathetic to the dirty creature sitting there then moved with a slow gait to stand in front of Feralmoon. She breathed slowly, her shoulders visibly rising and falling just a little bit as she tried to regain some kind of child-like composure. Her ears twitching to whatever noises she was hearing, drooped miserably toward her shoulders and her tears hadn’t yet stopped flowing.

Abeytu reached out with the end of her staff and lifted the small chin. Leaning down the Crone brushed the hair out of her face and looked down into a face that looked far too innocent to be Grimtotem.

Big doe-like purple eyes stared up at the Shaman almost hopefully and met yet again in her short life, with disappointment. Abeytu was certainly not Magena and she spoke harshly to the child.

“You might not understand me, you little fool, but don’t show that stupid face to the others here. You’ll find no pity among their number. You’ll have to harden your spirit to survive this place, and you’ll have to grow cunning.”

Taking hold of the child’s chin, Abeytu shook Feralmoon roughly by the jaw and the child let out a scarce whimper as new tears rolled down her dark furred face and her expression screwed up in confusion and hurt. Abeytu dropped her and shoved the girl backward to hit the floor roughly again. Sniffling but knowing by now no one was going to come to her rescue with hugs and comforting words, Feralmoon sat upright and wiped at her face. Abeytu turned her back on the girl.

Makya gave the old-one a scathing look that barely registered before he turned to Feralmoon. His words were gruff, but held a bit more promise than the Crone’s had. The Shaman slowly took her leave, casting a barely perceptible backward glance at the warrior and his new fosterling.

Despite his nasty exterior, it seemed Makya had a soft spot for children. The young adult male was gentle as he helped the whelp to her feet and slowly reached up with a fur he kept on his belt to wipe her dark face free of tears. He picked her up with a sigh and held her against his side…

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“Keep that axe up, you useless bag of fur!”

A resounding crack sounded across the battle-yard and Feralmoon grunted as her arm thrummed with the energy behind Makya’s last strike. She was barely fifteen winters, her mane was cut short, shorn to just about two or three inches off the back of her neck and head. It presented less of a hand-hold in battle, as she was told and so she kept it that way despite how "unattractive" it was said to be. She also bore a nose-ring, a common decoration among their people, but also a statement of her prowess in battle. A hand-hold for those who could take it, it was simply a crescent of bone with a gold band in the center to pass through her septum.

She blocked the successive hits with the haft of the axe and when Makya swung again, putting even more power behind it she was driven to her knees, the haft of the practice weapon bowing and finally beginning to give beneath the strain, she grit her teeth and tried for a last ditch effort to push upward.

She braced her legs to bring herself upright again, the muscles in her shoulders and arms chording with effort and finally diverted the blow, breaking the axe haft in the process as she threw Makya’s strike wide and sent him off balance. With the two pieces of her weapons she assaulted the warrior and chieftain with the haft, striking him in the forearm with enough force to hopefully make it difficult at least to heft the weapon.

Abeytu watched with a sort of curiosity. With Clearwater gone, Feralmoon had no choice but to adjust. The spirits still rang in her ears, of that Abeytu was certain, and when she wasn’t being spoken to it wasn’t uncommon to see the young female staring at nothing in particular with a sort of absent attention. She learned how to speak Taurahe, and was actually a very quick study. She picked it up with very little difficulty which led the old one to believe that perhaps the skill had been there all along, that perhaps she was learning it as she listened to the goings on around her.

This year was the first in Feralmoon’s life that she’d ever had to deal with coming into a rut. She’d not only managed to fend off any would be suitors with her ill temper and nasty demeanor, she’d discouraged them from trying again with her fists. Makya had to speak with her regarding her violent tendencies. The young bulls had little experience with wooing a female, especially one regarded as insane and stupid, however Abeytu saw the amusement hidden in the warrior’s face. Coming into his middle years, he looked to the child he’d taken in so many years ago with new eyes and it was beginning to disturb the old Shaman.

Feralmoon was a weapon forged it seemed. The pitiful mewling child that she recalled the night she’d been pulled away from her twin had been ground to dust, replaced by an intimidating, quiet and violent warrior that no one seemed to want in the village. The earth however echoed her hoofbeats with promise, with whispers of potential hidden within the stubborn and steeled frame. She was still short, standing just over five and a half feet, but there was still time for her to grow and judging by the size of her hooves, she’d do just that, promising to become one of, if not, the tallest females in the village.

At that moment the young woman plowed her shoulder into Makya’s and toppled him, pinning his good arm to his side at the same time. She attempted to use her body weight to pin him there, and while she was certainly hefty, there was no pinning someone twice as big as she was. Eagle-Eyes turned and grabbed her arm with the pinned hand, and rolled, pulling her arm up and straight, keeping his hand braced to break it if necessary.

“Do you yield?” Makya snarled into Feral’s face.

Feral gave a sharp cry of surprise and discomfort at the hold.

“Do you yield?” He snarled again.

“..N-Never!” The female grated out and brought her leg up in a rather agile display and attempted to hook it around his neck.

She failed, and Makya simply gave a twist of her arm and yanked lightly. The resounding pop of her shoulder coming free from its socket echoed across the practice yard and several of the on-lookers winced. Feralmoon cried out in pain and grit her teeth, squirming beneath him.

“Pathetic! Miserable!”

“But…Chieftain, she brought you down!” offered a female in the back.

“But she failed to get the lethal hit, and that is what counts in battle. Not if you can floor them, if you can kill them!” He snapped at the female and finally stood, yanking Feral to her feet by the mane at the back of her neck.

She scrambled to stay upright, cradling her dislocated shoulder tenderly as she glared at him, the threat of something akin to the berserk fury he exhibited shining clear in her dark eyes. He swatted her in the back of the neck and smiled lightly to her before stepping up, hooking one leg between hers and giving her shoulder a shove. The bone snapped back into place and Feral’s expression relaxed after she winced, moving to limp off the yard.

“And where do you think you’re going?” Eagle-Eyes growled menacingly as she moved away.

She froze in place. “Nowhere.”

“Damn right. On your guard, get a new weapon, we start again.”

Abeytu watched for a while longer as the brave threw the child around like she were nothing but a large scarecrow. Tonight she would undergo a ceremony that held very little importance in most lives. Children trained with their parents for a good portion of their lives to resume their posts and the spirits for the most part agreed with them, however for Feralmoon…The Ancestors had made it clear the night she’d gasped for breath and let out her first cries, cries that should have been from the land of the dead.

Tonight she’d be again disappointed and torn from what she’d known for years. Abeytu turned her back on the sparring and walked away.

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