Lost and Lovedrunk
Classic Champagne Leopard Blanket Knabstrupper sport horse
Potential show jumper with great lines, and pretty to boot
“Shhhh, he’s right ahead,” the little doe whispered, suppressing a breathless laugh as she scampered forwards. It was crucial he didn’t realise there were two of them, not right now, anyway… the whole game would be ruined if he realised there were two of them.
Ahead of them was a huge bull with broad, heavy antlers and muscles bulging so much it looked like they were trying to escape. It made him look absolutely ridiculous in Aneira’s eyes - that and the fact that he went raiding to get outsider does because he was too useless for any Blackwood to ever want him were crimes enough for him to be the victim of their prank.
Aneira didn’t need to worry about her conspirator making noise though - Adriana knew the game just as well as she did. With a last affectionate little nip at her twin’s dark ear, the young witch cantered out of the trees to stand directly in front of the stag.
“Aw, where ya going? Can’t find a Blackwood doe to love you?”
He grunted with irritation and turned, walking deliberately away from this irritating little doe.
“Hey, I’m right here,” Aneira called, gently pushing with her illusion magic to set her voice just behind his ear and only just managing to keep from sniggering, “Don’t you care what a proper doe looks like?”
She could see her sister was sneaking behind him, placing her hooves with care to make as little sound as possible. Adriana was always the more careful of the two of them, and while Aneira admired her sister’s steely coolness she could never quite work out how her twin managed to keep from laughing at these crucial moments.
“Yes there must be something deeply wrong with you. Are you too weak to impress one of us?”
Adriana’s voice was Aneira’s perfect equal, and her chuckle burbled through the air after she spoke, fruity and feminine, as she drew her silky tail along the stag’s back.. and then disappeared. Well, appeared to disappear - Aneira could still see her, unaffected by the spell as she was, but she wasn’t looking at her delicate twin.
Aneira could barely keep herself from laughing at the shocked expression on the raider’s stupid great face - he looked so surprised to find her touching him where he knew she wasn’t. It was glorious! Well, not her, of course, it was Adriana, but he would never know that, would he? Stifling her laughter she sprang out of the trees again, rearing up and tapping him sharply on the rump with a delicate front hoof.
“You’re rude, aren’t you? Not even looking at me when I’m talking to you!” she scolded, darting away from his prodigious rack as he swung around, snorting with with building frustration.
“Who are you?” he bellowed as she skittered backwards, lifting his head to get a better view at the tiny witch - who immediately cloaked herself in shadow, bolting back to the safety of the trees, throwing her voice behind her to where she hoped her sister would be waiting, trying to keep the edge of silent laughter from creeping into her words.
“Well I’m not going to tell you if you ask like that!”
Hidden by her magic, she couldn’t help but let the silent laughter take her, just for a second, at the stupid look on the great idiotic creature’s face. He looked halfway between lust and fury as he turned, leaping towards Adriana.
“Ah ah ah, I’m right here pretty boy… Aww come on darling, why would you want one of those stupid little princesses when you could have….Me.”
Adriana was always better at being seductive than Aneira - Aneira could never keep a straight face. Drina could even do that slinky, hip wobbling thing and Neira had never quite bothered to learn how.
“No no, that’s not how it works. You have to catch me first,” her sister’s voice was a purr, and Aneira watched with delight as confusion once more reigned supreme on the idiot stag’s face. Adriana’s magic hid her once again and the lithe doe turned to her sister, letting her magic carry her whispered words.
“He’s all yours Neira.”
At once Aneira plunged back towards the stag, clearing the her own dark illusions from her path as she ran. Skidding to a halt, she reached forwards and gave him a sharp nip on the rump and to her delight he responded with a furious bellow.
She leapt backwards, cocking her head to one side as she looked at him. He was getting all sweaty and angry now, and she could see spittle foaming at the corners of his mouth. His stupid eyes were wide and bloodshot, and he almost looked like a great ugly bear. Well, a bear with antlers and without sharp teeth.
“You rotten little witch!” he roared, taking a step towards her. The little doe didn’t flinch and her narrow shoulders simply rose in a mocking shrug.
“I wouldn’t call a daughter of Úir rotten, if I were you,” Aneira replied, smiling sweetly. “But then, I don’t fancy a Glenmoron for my mate..” she added, turning slowly and very slightly lifting her tail. She wasn’t in heat yet - but there was just a glimpse, just enough of a hint of a scent, that she was sure he would catch her meaning.
With that, she pulled at her magic to cloak her in darkness again, and disappeared from the dribbling stag’s line of view, letting her voice fall to a magically placed whisper.
“Your turn, Drina…”
Ignoring her sister’s prodding at the stag, though it was hard to resist staying and laughing at him, Aneira cantered quickly and quietly towards the barren patch that was their agreed-upon spot. Hiding in the shadows of the trees, at the sparse clearing’s edge she began to weave her spell.
She knew what she had to do, and she knew it would be difficult, but still she hadn’t expected sweat to start beading on her brow quite this quickly. The magic was complex and at the very edges of her ability, but Drina would be here to share the magic soon and then it would be perfect. Aneira could hear the thudding of the great oaf’s hooves and then, blessing of the Earth Mother, there was her sister’s voice.
“That’s it, come on…”
As Drina stepped into the clearing, Aneira placed her illusion. There, where her sister was standing, was now the perfect image of a perfect doe - the perfect image of the perfect pair of does, really. That great stupid creature didn’t know that know, he just saw the pretty, petite creature flicking her ear and waiting for him in the middle of the clearing.
The ugly raider’s expression was a wonderful mixture of rage, confusion and lust and if it weren’t for the difficulty of keeping the illusory doe in front of him so perfect, Aneira would have been howling with laughter. As it was, a thin sheen of sweat was on her flanks despite the forest shade and her eyes were narrowed in concentration.
As her twin drew near, Aneira let her magic lean on Adriana’s, adding power to it and adding even more depth and reality to the vision.
“My lady… I apologise… I didn’t realise what you wanted…” the stag murmured, though there was still irritation written across his face the illusion before him was clearly enough of a distraction. Any good Blackwood raider would take a true daughter of Úir over a Glenmoron or a Firebrain and though this great hulking thing was an idiot, he was at least a real Blackwood.
The vision of the doe twitched her tail and turned her head slightly towards him, blinking and smiling demurely. Now that her sister’s magic was supporting her, Aneira could enjoy the spectacle of the great grunting idiot plodding towards the perfect vision in front of him. The tail of the vision twitched to the side, the stag reared up to mount… and with a great crash, he came falling face-first to the forest floor.
Aneira couldn’t contain the laughter anymore and, relieved of the strain of the magic she was suddenly filled with boundless energy and boundless laughter. Giggling with glee, she burst out of the shadows and pranced in front of their prone victim for just a moment, just long enough that he couldn’t get up and give chase.
“It’s true what they say, there’s no such thing as a clever raider!” she squealed, and with that, she charged off back between the pines, her laughter ringing through the air behind her.
As Adriana caught up to her she could feel her twin reach over and tuck a feather into her mane - a trophy from their latest conquest, and one well earned. Tossing her head back, she squealed her delight as they charged headlong through the black pines, back towards the herd and the safety it offered.
Well, the safety and the potential victims.
Twins of TerrorThe shadows of the dark forest hid them well. Silently Adriana crept forward, her twin right beside her.
“Shhhh, he’s right ahead.”
Drina rolled her eyes, sometimes her twin got a little too excited and started giving orders she knew perfectly well she didn’t need to. The bull was directly ahead, a little older and much bigger. He looked like a fool, rut muscles bulging in his neck, supporting a stupidly large rack that was covered in feathers and bones. His dark eyes glowed with a hormone driven lust.
They knew he was going to try and capture a pretty little pale faced doe, probably a mincing little snot from Glenmore.
It insulted her pride, weren’t Blackwood does good enough for him? She glanced down at her gorgeous dark coat, glossy and healthy, blending in perfectly with the forest around them. She would make him pay for those thoughts of simple minded little Glenmores carrying his filthy spawn. She conveniently forgot that she didn
Name: Aneira (Neira to her sister)
Year of Birth: 753 of the New Age
Eye Colour: Brown
Design Sheet: fav.me/d84o4sl
Sire: Albas - Blackwood Soldier, living (NPC)
Dam: Esterra - Blackwood Witch, deceased (NPC)
Foster-mother: Alannis - Blackwood Scout, living (NPC)
Bloodline: 100% BLACKWOOD BABY
Speed: 7 [Basic Level]
Stamina: 3 [Basic Level]
Strength: 0 [Basic Level] (Build Cap: 5 points max)
Illusion Magic (inborn): 10 [Medium Level]
Necromancy Magic (learned): 1 [Basic Level]
Herbs: 0 [Basic Level]
+7 speed - base bonus
+3 stamina - base bonus
+11 magic - starter bonus
Herd Position: Witch
Mate(s): Ew. She doesn’t need romance, she has her twin!
Current Location: Widow’s Hollow or thereabouts
Aneira is arrogant. Really, really arrogant - she’s special and she absolutely 100% knows it. Her arrogance extends to all aspects of herself: her physical appearance as well as her sense of self. She is very vain, and enjoys the fact that she appears to be a very image of Úir, or at least she enjoys the effect that his has on others. She has been treasured by Blackwood since birth- what a blessing from the Earth Mother, female twins! - and she knows her importance to the herd. Aneira expects to get what she wants when she wants it. Fortunately or not, mostly what she wants is to be a bit of a jerk by playing tricks on other Blackwoods with her illusion magic and her shadow - otherwise known as her twin Adriana.
This little dark doe is full of boundless joy in life and the mischief that can be wrought against others. She has a sense of cruel playfulness about her and delights in teasing other Blackwoods - particularly stags, and even more particularly male soldiers. She has a belief that they need taking down a peg or two, and she and her twin are the ideal fawnlings to do it. For Aneira, there is nothing better than hearing a stag bellowing in anger as she and her sister bolt away through the black pines.
All that said, Aneira has a secret. She is fascinated by palefaces - almost compulsively so. It probably stems from her knowledge that her foster mother abandoned her paleface colt to the wolves - although it was absolutely the correct thing for Alannis to do, the scout would still occasionally talk mournfully about the dead child. Aneira is both horrified and intrigued by pale coated fawnlings, fellow Blackwoods in particular and now and then she will lighten her hide with magic, partly to see what she looks like but mostly for the thrill of the forbidden. Adriana is disgusted by her twin’s fascination and it is one of the rare causes of disagreement between the twins - but this has magnified it in Aneira’s mind to something even more intriguing.
Aneira is lightly, delicately built. Like most of her Blackwood kin her ribs show through through most of the year, but she is naturally slight of build and she does not look unhealthy - it seems correct for her bones to be on display.
She lets her mane grow long, and twines raven feathers and beads of white clay into it simply for the look of it - this subtle touch of light colour on her hide always thrills the little doe and this way it causes no ruptures with her sister, who wears the beads as well.
Aneira dislikes her wolf pelt and wears it rarely - it smells and in the years since attaining it, the hair has started to fall out in patches and holes are beginning to wear in the hide. She will only wear it for the most special of occasions - almost as a silent, intendentional insult to whoever it is the occasion is for.
There is an old saying - twins are two souls, born once. With Adriana and Aneira there was certainly some truth to that; but in exchange for two souls, Úir took one in return. Their mother died in the birthing of them, leaving two perfectly formed, perfectly black fillies lying at her cold, dead flank before the night was over.
The pair were the daughters of a powerful sorceress, a Master of Illusion magic who could also call upon the dead. Her death was grieved greatly by the herd, but the twins were revered all the same. The only member of the herd who failed to see them as a blessing from Úir was their father. He loved their mother passionately and blamed the pair for her death - in a way, they were responsible as it was their birth that ended her life. Albas was sent into a spiral of grief from which he never fully recovered.
Even with no mother and a father that did not want them, they were such perfect images of Úir that their survival was ensured. A doe, Alannis, who had birthed a shameful paleface colt - rightly left to the wolves - took them in to feed and raise. Though she cared for them, Alannis could never love them as her own, and so they relied upon one another more than they ever did upon their foster-mother. Aneira was always aware that Alannis was missing something, someone, and sometimes the scout would mutter about the curse of love for her dead Palefaced son, and the young filly was intrigued…
The twins grew up looking after one another - Adriana, minutes older than her sister, was always the ‘mother’ of the pair, colder and more serious than the boundlessly cheerful Aneira, but their upbringing made them both certain of their own survival. When their foster-mother grew tired of them, or did not have enough milk for two hungry mouths, they would charge through the rest of the Blackwood herd seeking out other ways to find their supper. They always played tricks upon the rest of Blackwood using their identical faces, but when their illusion magic manifested at three the pranks became much more frequent - and much more enjoyable for the pair. It was then, when they were aged three, that their foster-mother had finally had enough. Three years being tormented by these perfectly dark, perfectly prank-filled sisters and three years of deepening grief was enough - Alannis wished for a child of her own once more and after one trick too many she, at last, turned Adriana and Aneira away.
The twins, suddenly completely parentless, took the decision to approach their father. Albas had never recovered from their mother’s death and wanted nothing to do with the prankster pair and the memories they evoked for him. Although her sister took this rejection hard, Aneira saw it very differently - it was permission. No adult wanted them, so there was nobody to stop them; they now had no reason to cease in their reign of terror! Or well, reign of increasingly annoying the rest of the herd.
Their natural skill with magic meant they moved quickly towards becoming Witches, and at their coming of age ritual it was through cunning and trickery, rather than brute strength, that they both returned with wolf pelts slung across their dark shoulders.
Though they serve the herd as Witches, the twins do not take their duties particularly seriously, and they find endless fun in playing pranks on the older members of the herd. At some point, perhaps, they’ll mature, but right now, why on earth should they?
Illy didn’t like it here.
She had her friends, and Keet looked after them and Rafe was all snuggly and warm, and Ziya was brave as anything, but she didn't have her Momma and she didn't have her Father and she didn't get to listen to stories about Molach and she couldn't play at running because the guards didn't like it when you ran too far.
When the guards didn't like it you had to lie down and be quiet, and they didn't even care if you were crying.
Illy missed Momma more than anything, but it was scary because she wasn't sure what her Momma looked like any more. She remembered Momma’s smell, and she thought she remembered what Momma sounded like… but she didn't know any more. There were nice does here, and their babies were happy and safe and it made her think about Momma when she saw them and then she was just sadder than ever before and the nice does would tell her to stop crying and that it would be ok but they didn't understand and it made her cry even more.
She missed having milk to drink, and curling up to sleep against Momma’s belly. And she missed the creche too, because even though lots of the fawns from the creche were here it wasn't the same. None of their mothers and fathers were here, and even Keet was scared sometimes, she was sure. He had his Dad though, and Keet’s Dad was Annabelle’s dad too… but she was sure she’d never met him before, even if he was nice and he did tell them stories.
The winter had been horrible. She hoped that winter wasn't always like that, but she didn't know any different, it was the first time she’d seen one. There were storms and rain and snow and it was cold and all she could do to be warm was curl up with Rafe and Keet and Ziya.
Rafe was the best at making her feel warm.
Rafe was the best.
Sometimes, she heard the guards say things that she didn't understand, and she wondered if she should tell Keet or Ziya or even Keet’s Dad. When Keet or Ziya or one of the other clever fawns like Annabelle were around the guards didn't talk so much, but when it was just her and Rafe all cuddled together they didn't mind talking, and they’d say strange things about an Alliance and a war…
Illy remembered hearing about the war before, back when she had Momma. She remembered Momma and Father talking, and she remembered the word. She didn't know what it meant, but she thought it was bad. She thought it was something to do with why she was here, but she didn't know.
Once, she heard one of the guards say he was sad, because they had to steal babies and he thought it was wrong. The other guard had told him to shut up or he'd tell the fox. The first one had gone quiet then, and trotted off and his ears were back like he was angry.
She didn't know why the guard would tell a fox about it, or the first one would go off like that, but she liked the first guard better now. She didn't feel as scared of him as she did the others. When he was there, sometimes she didn't have to hide in Rafe’s shoulder. Sometimes she smiled at him, and then he looked sad, but he smiled back, even though he wasn't happy.
Even with the nice guard who looked sad, and Keet who was clever and strong, and Ziya who was as brave as anything, and Rafe who was the best…
Even with everything, Illy didn't like it here.