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2,922 Is My Ego Showing?

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About Yeoldebard

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    Awesome Member

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    Bisexual, leaning male
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    My interests are reading, writing, the violin, and video games.

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  1. This is a subject I have dealt with nearly daily for the past two years. I am not trying to normalize anything, i am merely showing ine culture's solution to a problem many have. Personally, I find it sad that Sarah took the path she did. What you do not see here is the hours of agonizing over her decision, the thought I put into her situation, the steps that the medical professionals put in place to help her. It is a shame I was unable to show all that in the story, but a story is a finite thing, and I am not necessarily able to show everything that happens.
  2. I am sorry for your losses, and hope I didn't make your pain any worse by posting this chapter.
  3. Honestly, neither did I until about five months ago.
  4. The sun shone in his eyes, Jordan grumbling as he pulled the covers over his head. Sunlight… He was missing something. With a gasp, the werewolf sat up. He had forgotten to set his alarm early. “Shit… what time is it?” Leaping out of bed, Jordan grabbed his phone. He had no recollection of going to bed the night before. Had Lysander carried him to bed somehow? “Noon?!” the werewolf yelped, looking at the time. Throwing on some pants, the werewolf rushed out of the room, sliding into the living room. “Oh hey, you’re awake,” Lysander said, holding the baby in his arms as he fed him. “Where’s Damian? We’re late for work. Like really late.” “He’s at work,” Lysander replied. “And you are staying home today. Doctor’s orders. I’m going to finish feeding Dylan and then he is going to bed, and we are going to have some alone time.” “Dylan?” Jordan asked, his heart still pounding from the rush of waking up. “Damian named him. It’s a cute name, don’t you think?” The man nodded, sitting on the couch slowly. He looked at the infant in Lysander’s arms, taking in the tiny ears folded over Dylan’s head. Ears that seemed to be taking on calico markings already. Milky eyes made Jordan think the neko was blind, but Lysander hadn’t said anything about that. It was okay, right? “He’s very quiet,” Jordan said. “Nah, you were just exhausted last night. Little guy had me and Damian running up and down all night.” “Why didn’t you wake me? I could have helped.” “Don’t worry mei Aerael, we will figure this out soon. But you needed your rest last night.” Lysander pulled the empty bottle from Dylan’s mouth with a soft plop, the neko letting out a tiny mewl of disapproval. “There there Sialena, it’s okay,” Lysander soothed. “Would you like your father to burp you?” “Wha- no I can’t-” Jordan protested as Lysander set Dylan in his arms. “Lysander, I don’t know what to do with babies!” he hissed. “Well, we have a baby, so you should probably learn.” The elf picked up a small towel, setting it over Jordan’s shoulder. “Hold him so his head is next to yours.” Jordan adjusted the baby, uncomfortable with the new position. “Now you just pat his back until you get all the gas out.” “Gas? Um… okay…” Jordan set Dylan against his shoulder, his hand gently touching the neko’s back. “He’s not doing anything,” he said uncertainly. “That’s because you have to rub his back,” Lysander replied. Someone knocked on the door, and the elf went to answer it as Jordan’s hand circled Dylan’s back. The neko felt so fragile in his arms. “Now there’s a sight I never thought I’d see,” Arisa said, standing in front of Jordan. “You’re back,” the werewolf noted. “Apologetically. I made an assumption yesterday, and it was wrong. I’m sorry,” the elf replied. “Maybe you should apologise to the one whose eye is still bruised,” Jordan said coldly. “We’re fine,” Lysander waved off. “You have one heck of a punch.” His head turned slightly, glancing at the door. “Did you hear that?” he asked. Jordan was instantly on guard. “What? What did it sound like?” he demanded. “Like someone knocking on the door. Again.” Lysander moved toward the door, Arisa sitting next to Jordan. “I really am sorry,” she said. “It’s not the first time we’ve fought,” Jordan reminded her. “I’m over it if Lysander is.” “Arisa? Someone is asking for you…” Lysander called uncertainly. Arisa stood up as Dylan let out a loud burp. Jourdan felt warm liquid hit his shoulder. Arisa laughed as she left the room, the sound trailing as Jordan held Dylan up. “Lysander, he just-” Lysander reentered the room, chuckling. “Yeah, that happens. I think little Dylan is good to go.” He took the neko from Jordan, cradling the baby as Jordan gingerly removed the towel from his shoulder. “Oh grow up Jordan,” Arisa said as she led a young woman into the room. “It’s just baby spit.” “Yeah, you try having a baby throw up on you,” Jordan muttered. “Who’s your friend?” “Oh, this is Claire, from next door. She’s mute,” Arisa said. The woman scowled slightly, staring at Jordan. “Great, now that you have a friend, maybe Lysander and I can get some alone time.” Carrying the towel to the laundry, Jordan let out a sigh. Not even awake for twenty minutes and he’d had a baby puke on him. Welcome to fatherhood… “Hey…” Lysander said, wrapping his arms around the man from behind. “Dylan’s down, albeit crankily. What do you say I kick Arisa and her friend out and we have some nice showertime?” “Shit, you just read my mind,” Jordan replied. Kissing the back of his neck, Lysander backed away. “You get the shower started, and I’ll join you in a bit.” Nodding, Jordan made his way to the bathroom. He was going to enjoy the warm water. Five minutes later, Lysander opened the bathroom door, leaving it ajar. He let out a long sigh, looking at Jordan, who stood warming the water, still dressed. “I’m pretty sure that’s warm enough,” Lysander said. Jordan nodded silently, staring at the water. “What’s wrong Aerael?” “How do you deal with everything? You’re always so confident, yet so… like, so calm.” Lysander chuckled quietly. “It’s a lot of practice. I’m in a high stress profession. If I let my emotions control me, I’ll just make things worse. So I’ve taught myself to hide my feelings for the most part. It can be hard sometimes.” He took Jordan in his arms, slowly pulling the man’s shirt off. “Is there anything in particular that is troubling you?” “It’s my fault Jacob is dead,” Jordan blurted. “I should have been the one to go after the gold.” “Jacob did his job. He knew the risks, and so did Sarah. Every day he’d leave for work, neither of them certain he would be back that night. Tell me something Aerael. What would have happened if you went instead?” “I would have chewed Halor to bits as soon as I saw him.” “Halor. I see. And then what? You would have to live with the knowledge that you killed someone, a person you knew. More than that, his death would be used as fuel. Dangerous werewolf murders man for gold.” “I didn’t fucking ask for this!” Jordan yelled. “Any of it!” “I would hope you didn’t. None of this was your fault. And blaming anyone is just going to cause more heartache.” “My life was so simple before.” “Before what? Before you met me? Damian? Before you became a wolf? I don’t think life is ever simple Jordan. We always have our struggles,” Lysander said. Jordan stared at the elf, into his eyes. He felt safe in Lysander’s arms, like the elf would do anything to protect him, even from himself. “Fuck… Why do you have to be so wise?” he sighed. “Can you tell me something?” “I can try.” “What… What does a wolf do when they lose a friend?” Lysander inhaled sharply. “It… uh, it is different with everyone, just like with any person. Some wolves find comfort in a group, some prefer to be left alone.” “And you?” “I don’t like to upset my friends. But at the same time, I do appreciate support. What you did for me last night… That was better than anything in the world for me.” “Will you be okay tonight?” Lysander shook his head. “Honestly, no. And I know Sarah realizes that. But I’m not going to let my feelings keep me from helping my friend in her time of need. Do you think you can get me tonight?” “Of course. Just let me know when.” Jordan kissed the elf lightly. “Well, I suppose we should get this shower going, huh?” Smiling slightly, Lysander finished undressing his mate, before turning his hands on his own clothing. Damian stuck his key into the lock, his muscles stiff from the days work. Before he could open the door, the handle was pulled out of his hand, Jordan standing before him. “Hey…” “You went to the store without me,” Jordan said. “Yeah, Lysander said you should sleep…” Jordan’s arms wrapped around the neko, Damian letting out a squeak. “You… you aren’t upset with me?” he asked. “No! I’m just happy you’re home. Why would I be mad at you?” Damian shrugged helplessly as Jordan kissed him. His tail twitched nervously, and he let out a soft whimper into Jordan’s mouth. They backed up into the apartment, Jordan closing the door behind them. “You know something Damian? I love you.” Jordan let out a soft snort. “I said it… I actually said it. And I mean it. I love you.” Damian closed his eyes, sinking further into Jordan’s arms. “I love you too,” he whispered. “Where’s Dylan? And Lysander?” “Lysander laid down for a nap and Dylan is in his crib. Was Miss Reyla upset I was gone today?” Damian shook his head. “No. She sent me home early too. I got the paint scrubbed off the wall, so that’s less we have to do tomorrow. And the window is completely fixed. We didn’t open today, so there wasn’t much to do.” “Did you take the money in?” “Oh yeah, Lysander reminded me about that this morning. And Miss Reyla gave me money for the bus home.” “Why didn’t you call me? I would have picked you up.” Damian shrugged. “I thought you and Sander might be doing something. I didn’t want to interrupt. Besides, I kind of smell like you two. I didn’t think anyone was going to bother me on the way home.” He moved toward the bathroom, Jordan watching the neko’s tail swish. “I’m going to take a shower. I feel kind of dirty,” Damian called quietly. “Careful, Dylan is sleeping in there-” “No worries,” Damian waved off, turning into Lysander’s room. A moment later, he backed out of the room, locked in Lysander’s embrace. “Hey Jordan, I found this guy trying to sneak into my room. He belong to you?” the elf said, looking over at the man. “I haven’t claimed him yet, but yeah, he’s mine.” Damian’s tail was nearly twisting itself in knots in Lysander’s arms. He buried his head into the elf’s chest, a quiet purr escaping his lips. A knock at the door interrupted them. Jordan was already moving, his hand on the door in moments. Opening it, he found Sarah standing on the other side, a small smile on her face. “Hi, Jordan, right? Is Lysander home?” The elf was at the door an instant later. “Yeah, I’m here. Why don’t you come in for a bit?” Jordan stepped aside, letting Lysander take over. Damian came to stand beside him, in full view of their visitor. “You did get a neko in here,” Sarah chuckled, swatting Lysander’s arm. “Figures you would manage something like that.” “Hi…” Damian said quietly. Jordan set an arm around the neko, squeezing him lightly. “Weren’t you going to take a shower?” he asked. Damian looked at him gratefully before Jordan shooed him away. The werewolf understood. Here was someone who was prepared to take her life, and she was… happy. Almost cheerful. “I wanted to make sure you were still okay with this,” Sarah said, looking at Lysander. “I am,” Sander nodded. “I’m not,” Jordan interrupted. “Jordan, please-” “Why are you doing this? You know, there could be another wolf out there for you. Or human, elf, neko, whatever.” “Then they will move on with their lives, and find someone else to settle with,” Sarah shrugged. “And what about Lysander? You’re going to take all the pain you’re feeling and throw it on him. Why?” “Lysander can handle it. I know he can.” “It seems fucking selfish of you if you ask me.” Lysander sighed quietly, watching his mate spar with his friend. “Yes, it is rather selfish. The thing is, once it’s done, I won’t care anymore. Jordan, I know you care about Lysander, it’s obvious. But there is nothing that you can tell me that will change my mind.” “Fine. But why do you have to be so happy about it?” “Why not? Like I said, soon I’ll be free from all of this. I don’t expect you to understand. In fact, I hope you never understand why I am doing this. But it is my choice, and if I decide to end my life with a smile on my face, why do you care?” “Because it is not you who is ending your life. You’re making Lysander do it,” Jordan growled. “That is the one regret I have. But I would rather have someone I know and trust with me when I go.” Sarah turned to Lysander. “Speaking of which, it’s almost time. They want me to get there a few hours early.” “I’ll get my keys,” Lysander nodded, heading for his room. Jordan followed him, closing the door. “I don’t like this,” he said immediately. “I know you don’t,” Lysander sighed. “But in the end, she’s right. This is not your choice. It is mine.” Grabbing his keys from a dresser, the elf hugged Jordan. “I’ll call you,” he said, before leaving the room. Jordan heard him open the bathroom door. “Damian, I’m leaving-oof!” Damian had his arms wrapped around Lysander, his naked body pressed against the elf’s. “Are you going to be okay?” his muffled voice asked. “Of course I am,” Lysander smiled painfully. “I have you two.” He kissed the neko, gently pushing him back into the bathroom. Glancing back at Jordan, the elf added, “Make sure you give Dylan another bottle around nine.” Jordan nodded silently. “I’ll… I should be done by one.” “I’ll be waiting.” Taking a deep breath, Lysander walked into the living room. A minute later, Jordan heard the front door close. “You really should go to bed Damian.” “Mm mm. Not until Lysander gets home,” Damian denied tiredly. He was curled up in Jordan’s lap, eyes drooping heavily. Jordan ran his hands through the neko’s silky hair, tangling his fingers gently in short curls. The couch was barely long enough for them to curl up together. “I can wake you up when I get him.” “I don’t want to go to bed.” Dylan began whining from the other room, and Damian rolled out of Jordan’s lap. Picking himself up, he yawned, stumbling toward the bedroom. Jordan was about to follow him when his phone rang. “Hello?” “I’m at Elias Park…” Lysander sounded exhausted, his voice worn through. “I’ll be there in ten minutes,” Jordan promised, already reaching for his riding jacket. He slipped into the bedroom, finding Damian sitting against the wall with Dylan in his arms. Both nekos were snoring quietly. “Damian?” Jordan gently shook his mate. “Huh, what?” Damian startled awake, clutching Dylan protectively. “I need to get Lysander. Why don’t we put Dylan back in his crib to sleep, okay?” “Okay...” Damian mumbled as Jordan carefully took their son from him. The werewolf slowly lowered Dylan into the crib, the baby waking again as his back hit the bed. “I got him,” Damian said, rocking the crib slightly with his foot. “I’ll be back soon,” Jordan said, kissing Damian. Leaving the room, Jordan hurried out of the apartment. It wasn’t long before his bike was roaring down the road. Lysander was sitting against a tree when Jordan pulled up to the park, head buried in his knees. Jordan shut off his bike and made his way to his mate. Silently, they sat together, two figures under a tree in the dark. “She was afraid of needles. Always had been. That’s why she wanted me there, because she knew I wouldn’t hurt her.” Lysander turned his head to face Jordan, silent tears streaming from his eyes. “I know you don’t understand. But I am glad I did this. As much as it hurts, I am glad I could be there for her when she needed me.” “You’re right. I don’t understand. But I’m here for you. And so is Damian.” “I know you don’t like werewolves. But Jacob loved them, loved the whole idea of being a large dog. I never pried into his personal life, but Sarah once told me Jacob never felt welcome as a man. And they were perfect for each other. Sarah loved having a dog she could pamper and Jacob loved being a dog for her. I don’t even think they ever mated, but everyone knew they were together.” Lysander chuckled wryly, shaking his head. “It still seems ridiculous, but who are we to tell people how to enjoy their lives?” Sighing, the elf tilted his head back, staring at the stars. Through it all, Jordan was silent, letting him get it all out. “That’s how she went. In wolf form, curled up in their bed and smelling his scent. She just… fell asleep while I pet her.” Jordan set an arm around the elf, pulling him close as Lysander let out a sob. “It’s okay. Let it all out,” he said gently. They sat like that for nearly ten minutes, Lysander’s cries echoing through the deserted park. They got home around two, Jordan helping Lysander into the apartment. As they closed the door, Damian came out of the bedroom. The neko embraced the elf, pulling Jordan into the hug as well. Nothing needed to be said.
  5. Yeoldebard

    Chapter 80

    Sometimes the dead should remain dead, even if their loved ones must suffer. You have written an amazing story, making us ecstatic one moment, fearful the next, sorrowful after. Masterfully done.
  6. Yeoldebard


    It took nearly half the day to reach Mistral, Sinjaro winding his way through the island. His feet were bleeding from numerous small cuts, his tail hanging low. Why was he doing this again? Jimila had given him enough gold to get by for at least the next week. He could probably find a ship to take him back to Auridon, maybe set up camp as a hunter. The Khajiit nearly cried as he spied the bridge heading into the city. Finally he could sit, get some food, sleep. And then buy some boots for his poor feet. “You made it! Good!” His head snapped up. That voice. He hated that voice. Razum Dar stood leaning on a post, staring at Sinjaro with that twinkle in his eye again. “You. Do you know how much trouble this one went through for you and your Dominion?” “Raz was confident you could handle everything,” the other Khajiit smirked. “Step carefully in Mistral my new friend. Serpents wander through the tall houses.” “What are you talking about?” Raz flipped a coin toward Sinjaro, the Khajiit catching it in confusion. “This one speaks of the ambassadors. The Dominion is trying to aid Mistral, yet the Maomer seem to have designs on the city for themselves. Perhaps you could talk to the Silvenar in the Chancery about the negotiations; show him that token. Raz thinks you might be just what we need.” “And what is in it for Sinjaro? This one is waiting on your last reward.” “Don’t worry. Raz never forgets his friends.” A clawed finger ran down his cheek, the scent of the Khajiit nearly unleashing Sinjaro’s wolf. He stepped back quickly. His body yearned for the Khajiit’s touch, but he was not giving in. “Fine. But this one has things he needs to do in Mistral first.” Starting past the Dominion Khajiit, Sinjaro paused. “This one must ask, who are you exactly?” Razum Dar smiled as one would at a ma’khajiit. “Raz is a simple Khajiit. He seeks only to do what is best for all of Tamriel. Also a saddle that won’t pinch the tail. One day…” Sinjaro continued on his way, still unsatisfied. There was something more to Raz, he just knew it. But for now his aching feet and grumbling stomach reminded him of his tasks. The stilted homes of Mistral stood over him as he walked, Khajiit and Mer using the areas below for trade. Ma’khajiit chased guar and chickens through the city, yelling at their play. A woodworker gave Sinjaro a once over, shaking her head at the sight of the Khajiit’s bow. Sinjaro approached the Altmer, removing the shield and the staff from his bag. “This one would like to sell these,” he said. “A mage’s staff, and a rather nice looking shield. Where would you find such rarities?” the elf questioned. “Sinjaro is not someone to be taken lightly,” the Khajiit shrugged as an answer. The Mer ran a hand down the staff. “Lightning imbued with ice. Very dangerous combination..” she said. “It is well crafted, for an apprentice mage. “Sinjaro is no mage.” “That is obvious,” the Mer smirked. “Yet you do have some magic. You managed to summon a familiar at the least.” She motioned to Zephron, who had gained a strange, almost calico pattern to her fur. Sinjaro was uncertain how that had happened, or when. “I suggest you visit a Mages’ Guildhall, and have them teach you to better harness your energies. But, as for the wood… I can offer forty gold for the staff and the shield together.” Forty gold. Sinjaro didn’t even think about it. That would be plenty for a nice hot meal. “Done,” he said. Taking the gold, the Khajiit left the weapons behind, smiling as he spied a leatherworker nearby. “One hundred eighty gold?!” “That is correct,” the leatherworker said, holding up the boots. “These boots are of the finest quality and will never become worn.” They were cheap boots, plain boots. Sinjaro could see another three pairs that each looked fancier than the one before. Muttering quietly, Sinjaro paid for the boots. He couldn’t go without any longer. Sitting down, he began pulling the boots on, wincing in pain as they scraped over his battered feet. Zephron tensed suddenly, energy flowing from Sinjaro, and the pain in his feet vanished. “Oh, you’re a healer now?” he said, staring at the familiar. Zephron sat and began licking her paw. Shaking his head, Sinjaro stood. He still had a little money left over. It was time to find something to eat. Walking past the Chancery, Sinjaro noticed a box tucked in some bushes. Scanning the area, he stooped next to the small container, opening it. Inside were a pair of simple looking rings. They looked old, like they had been sitting in the box for years. Shrugging, Sinjaro snatched them out of the container, no one trying to stop him. As the Khajiit slid a ring on each hand, he felt a feeling of vigor rush over him, as though he was healthier than before. Magic rings… Sinjaro smiled, walking away. He would get his food, and then there was one more stop he wanted to make before he went on Razum Dar’s errand. Sitting at a bar near the Chancery, the Khajiit watched the chef at work, chopping vegetables while a cauldron bubbled beside her. “What is your request?” she asked, pausing in her work. “What do you have?” “Guar breast, boiled radish, filleted trout. Prices vary, but the radish is cheapest.” Sinjaro frowned. “This one will take the radish then,” he said, pulling out his gold. “Sinjaro is also out of je’m’ath.” “This one has much je’m’ath. You may have a sack of it.” Sinjaro smiled happily. He had been without the sugar for far too long. Now it seemed his drought was over. The chef passed him a bowl of boiled radishes, the Khajiit devouring them quickly. He needed to remember how to cook meat, and fast, or he would never survive on a hunt. A Khajiit sat beside Sinjaro, the hunter glancing over. “Draskay, trevan,” Lieutenant K’radel said. “Sala kha’jay,” Sinjaro greeted her. “What brings you to Mistral?” “I’ve been reassigned. I’m here searching for a ship.” “This one recommends the Prowler. Their captain is very friendly.” “Friendly with isozeva?” Sinjaro laughed. “This one would not know. Sinjaro never asked. That Razum Dar, though… He is isozeva if this one has ever seen one.” “That one certainly has a way with words,” K’radel agreed. “Oh, I should mention the Dominion has decided to make Eagle Strand their forward base for the moment. Unfortunately it is unlikely you will be getting your… home… back.” “That is a shame. This one always liked the knowledge there was something waiting back home. But Sinjaro did expect this outcome.” “I have a few recipes. I know they won’t make up for the loss of your sleeping area, but at least you can learn some variety in your meals, yes?” Sinjaro shrugged. “This one would be grateful to learn how to cook again. Sinjaro has suffered a rather… unusual setback in that.” K’radel pulled a small sheaf of papers from her pocket, scanning through them before sliding them over. Sinjaro looked through them, finding a recipe for chicken breast among a couple other notes. “Thank you. Bright Moons guide your path,” he said. “Warm sands, my friend,” K’radel replied as Sinjaro stood. The chef slid a sizable bag toward him, Sinjaro smiling in thanks as he fitted it into his own bag. He was unsure of how long the moon sugar would last, but he was grateful to have some carried with him. Maybe it would bring him back to the Riddle’thar. In any case, he had work to do. The Khajiit approached the wayshrine of Mistral, a large statue of a regal senche-lion sitting within the open structure. He felt strange in this place. His body was thrumming with energy, not unlike it did when he collected the power from skyshards. Khajiit and Mer walked past Sinjaro with purpose in their strides, none looking at the lone Khajiit. He sat in front of the shrine, studying it as the power within him ebbed and flowed. The eyes of the senche-lion suddenly erupted in a bright blue glow, and Sinjaro gasped. His body felt more calm, almost connected with this place of power. He didn’t understand it. Sinjaro had been to this wayshrine several times. It was his favourite spot in Mistral. But the statue had never done anything like this before. Maybe he would go to the Mages’ Guild. There was no doubt that something strange was going on with him. The shrine made him feel warm though, safe from the ills of the world. Maybe he would make this his new home. It was certainly no worse than the other places he had slept. He moved to sit between the statue’s feet, the stone radiating warmth through him. He would rest here a while, then continue his journey. Removing the papers K’radel had given him, the Khajiit began reading, memorising ingredients he had known once before.
  7. Yeoldebard

    Home At Last

    He could hear the sound of the ocean, smell the scent of drying fish in the air. Such a beautiful thing, the ocean. It gave a whole new method of hunting, with spears and nets... Sinjaro’s stomach gurgled loudly and he groaned, sitting up. His head was pounding, an ache like he hadn’t felt since he stopped taking moon-sugar. “The Vestige awakens once again!” “Rajhin kodesh!” Sinjaro yelped, head whipping around. He saw the Prophet standing near a door, the same ghostly visage that had appeared in the prison. “As I feared, we have arrived in different locations. I am in a city near the sea, in a land of eternal spring. The air smells of the ocean, and of markets, and gardens… It matters not. You have awakened once again and we must set you on your path.” “Sinjaro’s path leads him to home.” “Would that we could choose our paths in life…” It was simple, wasn’t it? He just needed to get to Khenarthi’s Roost, travel across the island to Eagle’s Strand and and go to his home. It would be nice to sleep in a familiar bed. Maybe he’d actually sleep through the night for once. If he still had a home. He had been gone for a while. “Er, how long was this one unconscious for?” “Days, weeks? I can not tell. The voyage between worlds has disrupted all sense of time and space. I only know that you were deposited into the sea and some charitable soul fished you out and brought you to dry land.” “What would you have Sinjaro do now?” “You will have to decide that for yourself. As for myself, I must find some way to repay Lyris for her sacrifice. I can not leave her to Molag Bal’s wrath,” the Prophet said sharply. “This one assumes he will see you again.” “Most assuredly. There is still much we need to accomplish. But off with you. We will speak again when the time is right.” The Prophet faded away, the room darkening as his glow followed. Taking better stock of his location, Sinjaro found he was in some kind of tower, shattered and broken. He had been laying upon a simple cot under the only bit of roof left, and there was a cauldron sitting nearby. When he sniffed at it, the Khajiit found it contained a cold, watery carrot stew. Still, food was food, and certainly whoever took him in wouldn’t mind a little more charity. Near the door, Sinjaro discovered a real treat. A selection of basic lockpicks, a pair of gems, a simple jack, and a bow better than the one he had picked up in that accursed prison. He collected them all, shedding his ruined shirt for the jack. Now if only he could find some boots… Exiting the tower, Sinjaro blinked in the sudden sunlight. He was standing near the entrance of a ruined fort… his ruined fort. “Bright Moons,” he sighed, looking around. It was changed, that was for sure. There were far too many Altmer running around, and injured cluttering up the place. Sinjaro could see his dilapidated tower, the only real home he had known, taken over by a strange Khajiit in a dark blue robe carrying an intricate staff. This was not okay. He had nowhere to go. Surely she would be amenable to sharing. There was space for them both there. Crossing the broken down fort, Sinjaro approached the Khajiit. “I’m sorry, we are out of moon sugar. You will have to wait for the next shipment,” the Khajiit said tiredly. “This one has not had moon-sugar in months, but that is not why Sinjaro is talking with you. You are in Sinjaro’s home.” “Your… home… has been commandeered by the Aldmeri Dominion to assist in the recovery efforts. I assure you when we are finished, you will be allowed to have it back.” “Who are you?” Sinjaro frowned. “You look like Khajiit yet speak like Altmer.” “This one-” The Khajiit stopped, taking a breath. “I am Lieutenant K’radel of the Aldmeri Expeditionary Force in Khenarthi’s Roost.” “And this one is out of a home.” Muttering quietly, Sinjaro started walking, only to be stopped by a calico hand. “For what it is worth, this one is sorry for your troubles.” A handful of gold fell into Sinjaro’s hand, Sinjaro looking at it in surprise. “Thank you walker,” he said. “Sinjaro wishes you well with your task.” “Jobal kha’jay.” They parted, Sinjaro looking around again. He was at a loss for what to do. All around him were soldiers busy at work, a bustling camp vastly different than the Eagle’s Strand he knew before. Slowly he came to the conclusion that there was nothing for him here. Perhaps he could go to Mistral, offer his services as a chef. After all, he was the only one who could make… could make… “Dark Moons…” Sinjaro snapped. He’d always been a chef, memorizing his recipes like all great cooks. But now he couldn’t remember a single recipe. How did one forget his life’s work? “Hey wet one!” A Khajiit approached Sinjaro, dressed in black leather armour. He had a twinkle in his eye, like one used to making mischief. Sinjaro was no stranger to mischief himself, but he doubted now was the time. “The hurricane must have disoriented you quite a bit, friend. Come, speak with Razum Dar a bit.” His voice was like a silky purr, the sweetest moon-sugar mead, and Sinjaro suddenly had a mental image of himself entwined in the Khajiit’s arms. Sinjaro shook his head roughly. That was the last thing he needed, to be caught up with some Aldmeri Khajiit. But he followed Razum Dar to another tower anyway. He had nothing else to do. “This one thinks we might be able to help each other,” Razum Dar said as they stood against the tower. “But first, a question. Where are you from?” Sinjaro had no idea what the Aldmeri meant. And he couldn’t exactly say he had come from a Daedric prison. But he had a hunch. There had been a hurricane, and now there were a bunch of soldiers in his home. “This one is a recruit who washed ashore with the other soldiers,” he said. Razum Dar chuckled. “Yes, lie with confidence and a twinkle in your eye my friend. You will do perfectly. If you are a recruit, we shall speak with the commander. She may have work for you.” “What is in it for this one? You say you can help Sinjaro. What if Sinjaro doesn’t need help?” “No one will stop you from leaving. But if you stay, you can do some good and get rich while doing so.” Sinjaro thought for a moment. He did need money. And he had survived everything that had been thrown at him. He had even gone claw to claw with a Daedra and survived. “And you? You have some stake in this as well,” he said. “Raz merely needs a friend who can talk to the people, put in a good word for the Aldmeri Dominion.” Sinjaro took a moment to think. He needed money. He was officially homeless, and barely had enough for a mead in Mistral. At this point, he couldn’t afford to be picky about what jobs he took. “Sinjaro will help you. But this one must be paid for his work.” “Of course!” Raz said. Sinjaro didn’t trust the grin on the Khajiit’s face one bit. “Follow me, and we’ll speak with the commander. She will have some work for you to do.” They walked back through the fort together, Sinjaro ensuring he stayed at least two arm lengths away from Raz. Approaching a gold-skinned Altmer barking orders, Raz waited for her attention. “Commander Karinith, this recruit says he would like to help.” “Good, I need a scout,” she said, glancing at the bow on Sinjaro’s back. “Several of my soldiers are missing and I need someone to find them. There are reports of Sea Vipers along the coast, scavenging the wrecks from the hurricane. See what you can find out.” She turned away, leaving Sinjaro to puzzle through the orders as he would. He knew about Sea Vipers, the Sea Elf pirates that claimed Khenarthi’s Roost belonged to them. But he hadn’t expected them to be raiding the coast. That was disturbing news. “There, you see? You fit in perfectly,” Raz smiled. “While you find the missing soldiers, this one will be in Mistral, dealing with some… diplomatic issues that have arisen.” “And this one’s money?” Sinjaro asked suspiciously. “If Commander Karinith doesn’t give you a reward, Raz will when you get to Mistral,” Raz winked. Sinjaro felt his loins stir and he turned away quickly. His tail swished in annoyance. How could the Khajiit get to him like that? Sure, Sinjaro joked about sex a lot, but he wasn’t easy. Yet Raz seemed to play him like a lute. “Until we meet again, jobal kha’jay t’harith jer drago.” He had missed the tongue of his people, and hearing it from the mouth of someone with a voice like that… It did not bode well for his self control. Sinjaro hurried away. As he neared the other end of the fort, Sinjaro’s eyes picked up a bright blue beam rising into the air. Curious, the Khajiit followed the beam to a tower, climbing up two flights of stairs. He found a skyshard at the top, his body nearly crying out for the power it could provide him. Kneeling, Sinjaro let the shard’s energy flow into him. He could feel things moving through his head, information that might be learned if he could just find the final piece. Something about arrows falling from the sky. Shaking his head, the Khajiit descended the stairs, making his way out of the fort. He doubted he would see the place again. Five minutes after leaving the fort, the Khajiit remembered he had no boots. His feet were killing him. But Sinjaro wasn’t going to let a little pain stop him. He would carry on, find these missing soldiers. In fact, he could hear someone calling already. At a crossroad further ahead, Sinjaro found a Bosmer in an Aldmeri uniform, clutching her arm to her chest. “You there, have you seen my crew? They answer to Edhelas, Onglorn, and Nistel,” she said, gritting her teeth with pain. “This one has not met any of your soldiers. Are you certain they survived the storm?” The Wood Elf shrugged helplessly. “We’re Dominion Marines. We laugh at the ocean’s attempts to kill us. Hurricanes though, they’re another matter…” “Sinjaro can help you find them. But what should this one do about their wounds?” “Our hold was full of an old Bosmer remedy. It’s labelled Torchbug Treacle, but most of us call it glow juice. You can try to find some, but you might have to fight the alits for it.” Sinjaro winced. Alits were crabby on a good day. With the storm barely past and strangers trodding on their land, the monsters would not consider this a good day. “Sinjaro will do his best,” he said. “Do me a favour, if you find my squad, tell them the sea hasn’t got me yet,” the Bosmer said. Nodding, Sinjaro turned, taking the narrow road down to the shoreline, where he could see plenty of wreckage from the fleet. He felt a presence enter his mind, one he recognised as Zephron. Shrugging, the Khajiit let his energy flow from his body, summoning the cat. She would be good company in his search. He found the glow juice first, in the guts of an alit he cut up. No one had ever claimed the creatures were smart. But he was grateful Zephron had shown up. If he didn’t have to fight the alits alone, he was happy. Sinjaro shook his hands, the alit’s gore flying off him. “Ugh, why did Sinjaro agree to this?” he muttered, tucking the third bottle of treacle in a bag he had found. Standing, the Khajiit picked up the scent of blood, coppery and tart. It was easy to follow the trail, and he said a brief thanks to the Hungry Cat for his increased sense of smell. He found the source of the blood sitting against a broken mast, holding his side. “Who are you?” the Bosmer asked. “Sinjaro was sent by a very concerned marine to search for her crew,” the Khajiit replied, pulling out a bottle of treacle. “Sergeant Firion? Hah, she made it,” the elf chuckled weakly, taking the bottle Sinjaro handed him. He swallowed the juice, grimacing. “Tastes like boiled sandals in mint tea… But it should knit up my ribs like new. I’ll find Sergeant Firion, let her know I’m alive.” Sinjaro moved on down the beach, skirting around groups of alits. He felt better about his task with Zephron watching his back, but he didn’t want to get into pointless fights. Still, he had to kill another two alits before he found the next marine sitting between two rocks. “I lost a lot of friends to that storm, cat. Give me some good news.” Sinjaro bristled at being called cat, but he squashed the feelings down. “Sergeant Firion sent this one to find you and your squad,” he said. “She’s alive? That is good news. I saw her go overboard. Held onto the ropes as long as I could. Tore my hands up…” The Bosmer held up her bloody hands. “I’m useless to my crew if I can’t hold a weapon.” “Here, this one has glow juice,” Sinjaro said, opening a bottle. He helped the marine drink, the skin on her hands slowly growing back. “Thanks. Once I can heft Spleen-Shanker, I’ll push up the beach and find Sergeant Firion.” Sinjaro noticed a greatsword at her side, the hilt covered in wet sand. “This one needs to find the last member of your squad,” he said, standing up. “Hope they appreciate their good fortune when you find them,” the Bosmer said, standing beside them. “Scrib humping sack of PUS! That stings!” Sinjaro left her to her swearing, making a mental note to never get sand in his wounds. From the sound of it, the feeling was not pleasant. He found the final squad member in front of a wreck. Yet another Bosmer, which did little to make Sinjaro think there would be racial equality under the Aldmeri Dominion. Separate squads for soldiers under their command? Did they also give their Wood Elf underlings weapons made of wood and not bone? Even Sinjaro knew of the Green Pact that forbade Bosmer from using vegetation. But then, he was a rather well travelled Khajiit. “You got some glow juice on you? I can’t get anywhere with my leg like this,” the Bosmer said. Sinjaro handed the last flask over. “Bless Y’ffre! Soon as I can stand I’ll head inland.” “This one has found the other soldiers in your squad and sent them to meet Sergeant Firion. They’re all safe,” Sinjaro announced. “Lieutenant Gelin dragged me out of the water. He’ll want to know Sergeant Firion and the others are safe. Think he said something about finding some shelter in a cave up ahead, but I was still spitting up sand.” Sinjaro scanned the shore, spotting the entrance to the cave not far ahead. “You go find your sergeant. This one will tell your lieutenant where you are.” The sun was starting to fall, waning Jone making its way through the sky with a new Jode. Suthay moons, like the ones that Sinjaro was born under. If he was lucky, Sinjaro could talk to the lieutenant and have enough time to find a bed for the night. The sand crunched under his feet as he neared the cave, the sound of water dripping from within. Zephron trotted past him, scouting the cave out for him. He could see torches hanging from the walls, small piles of ash at their bases. Flames flickered over the walls, lighting much of the cave, but a large formation blocked his sight through the center of the cave. Sinjaro pulled out his bow. He had been taken by surprise one too many times. It would not happen again. He crept through the cave, eyes shining in the flickering light. The Khajiit paused as his ears picked up a hiss. Snakes… He hated snakes. Then it came around the corner. Nearly ten feet long, with scales that shone bright green in the torchlight, the snake made Sinjaro tremble in fear. Its body scraped over rocks and bones, dried scales rustling as it neared the Khajiit. Sinjaro set an arrow on his bow, the projectile clinking quietly as his hand trembled. “Now would be a good time for Sinjaro to turn into a wolf…” he stammered. His wolf remained dormant though, lacking the bloodlust to come forth. “Clawless coward,” Sinjaro muttered. He took a step back, anchoring his arrow at his ear. The arrow leapt forward, sticking between a pair of scales, and the snake let out a deafening hiss. Zephron darted forward, hissing back at the snake, and Sinjaro laughed. He couldn’t help it. The sight of the dark panther staring down a giant snake was too much for him. The Khajiit echoed the hiss, feeling emboldened. He could kill this thing, and it would be a mighty hunt. Loosing another arrow, Sinjaro darted under a strike, the snake coiling up with their positions reversed. A wave of electricity washed over the fight, the snake breaking its coil. Taking the opportunity, Sinjaro sent one last arrow into the snake’s head. The fight was over. Standing over his defeated foe, Sinjaro held out his bow. It really was a piece of garbage, a low draw weight making it nearly impossible to penetrate anything. But beggars couldn’t be too picky, and he was definitely a beggar cat. “This one is lucky Sinjaro is a good shot,” he muttered, kicking the snake. “Here is snake… Where is the Bosmer?” The Khajiit looked around the cave, body still tense from the fight. There were a lot of bones strewn about the cave, too many even for a snake of this size. Assuming snakes left the bones. Sinjaro thought they swallowed their prey. He fought back a shudder. “You can run screaming like ma’khajiit later,” he said sternly. “Sinjaro better get more than twenty gold for this…” Walking cautiously through the cave, Sinjaro discovered a gruesome sight at the back. Tied to a pole was an Aldmeri soldier, body sliced to ribbons. His armour was missing, though a set of hide epaulets lay on the ground nearby. Sinjaro picked them up. By the look of it, the lieutenant wasn’t going to need them any more. Kneeling beside the body, the Khajiit examined the wounds, taking in a green foamy pus that oozed from arcane sigils carved into the Bosmer. Something was going on here. Something that likely had to do with the Sea Vipers, if the giant snake was any indication. Sinjaro just hoped the new Dominion soldiers could stop them. Setting the epaulets over his shoulders, Sinjaro left the cave, finding Sergeant Firion standing with her squad outside. “Turns out my squad were the ones who found me. Ever think about a career as a Dominion Marine?” “Moons no…” Sinjaro shook his head. “This one found your lieutenant dead. Some kind of ritual, though Sinjaro does not know for what.” “Lieutenant Gelin dead? As some part of ritual? What else did you find in that cave?” “Bones and a rather angry giant snake.” “This is too large for me and my squad. We need reinforcements. Nistel said there’s a beached ship further up the coast with some Dominion soldiers onboard. We need to get Lieutenant Gelin out of that damned cave. Would you go warn the crew of the ship for us?” Glancing at the darkening sky, Sinjaro shrugged. He doubted he would be able to sleep too soundly after seeing that soldier. “This one will warn the boat.” “Wait, take these. I found some glow juice. The squad doesn’t need them any more, so I thought they might help you,” the sergeant said, handing over a trio of bottles. “Thanks,” Sinjaro smiled slightly. At least these ones didn’t have alit guts all over them. Sinjaro would take his victories gladly. He found the ship nearby, a Khajiit working on some boards by the light of a lantern beside a gangplank. “You aren’t a silk-arsed Sea Viper or a cabbage mouthed castaway. State your business with the Prowler,” the Khajiit demanded without looking up from his work. “This one found a Dominion marine dead in a nearby cave. The dead marine appears to have been used in a ritual. Sinjaro thought you might want to know. His squad asks for reinforcements,” Sinjaro added, almost as an afterthought. “Oh. Well the Prowler is sitting like a hen in a wolf den for the moment. Perhaps this squad you mention could help with repairs, show they aren’t just two legged cargo.” “Sinjaro is certain they’d be glad to help. What needs repairing?” “We are missing a helmsman’s wheel that needs to be replaced. And there are several holes that need patching. Perhaps your soldiers could do some actual work.” “This one will do what he can.” “Oh, and the sun-sighter fell overboard when we beached. Our lookout saw those skink-fingered pirates scurry off with it. You’ll have to get it back any way possible.” Sinjaro let out a sigh. This looked like it was going to be a long night. But he would do it. For the gold. Returning to the squad, he found the Bosmers stacking one last rock on a small pile. “He’ll keep for now,” Sergeant Firion said. “What did the sailors say?” “They can’t promise reinforcements. Their ship is broken, but if we fix it, they might be able to help you in return.” Sergeant Firion hummed thoughtfully, studying her squad. “What needs to be done?” she asked. “The hull needs patching, the helmsman’s wheel has to be replaced, and the sun-sighter was taken by Sea Vipers.” The sergeant nodded, as though Sinjaro had confirmed her suspicions about the involvement of Sea Vipers. “Nistel, you fix the leaks. Edhelas, you’re our best scavenger, go find a new wheel. Onglorn, you can track down the Vipers that stole the sun-sighter.” As her squad vanished into the night, Sergeant Firion looked back at Sinjaro. “Is there anything else?” “This one does not think so. Sinjaro will return to the Prowler and see if they will send reinforcements.” “Wait, did you say the Prowler? Those aren’t Dominion sailors, they’re privateers! Just our luck!” “In Sinjaro’s experience, privateers hold themselves to a code. If they said they’d do something, they’ll not back out.” “See what you can do then,” Firion shrugged. Sinjaro began walking again, muttering quietly. “Go here, do this, run back… Sinjaro is not a messenger…” He stopped beside the old Khajiit quartermaster, who watched Nistel work with approval. “Maybe this one was too hasty to judge these soldiers. You have Oblan’s thanks, walker. And more than that. We cannot provide reinforcements, but Captain Jimila has some information that might prove useful to you. She’s on the forecastle. And don’t worry, she only bites if you give her good reason.” He was a little wary of being back on a ship, the memory of his last foray still fresh in his mind. But Sinjaro didn’t let his worry show as he walked up the stairs to the forecastle. “Thanks to you, the Prowler will be free of its bonds soon,” the Khajiit captain said as he approached. She seemed too soft-spoken to be the captain of a privateer, but Sinjaro had seen stranger things in the past year. Like an Argonian healer. “I have no reinforcements for you, but I have information. I know who is killing the Dominion marines. Our lookout saw Sea Vipers drag a marine into a cave. Later he saw your friends remove the body. Had we not been so short handed, I would have ordered his rescue, but members of my own crew are missing.” “What happened to your crew?” “The Sea Vipers happened. Before we understood the danger, I sent my crew to scavenge among the shoal. We thought they had just gone missing, but one returned not long ago, claiming she had been captured by Maomer trying to raise another hurricane.” “Dark Moons, what has this one gotten himself into…?” “My crewmates are tied up to serpent statues on a wrecked Dominion ship. There was something about lodestones on the Maomer wrists being the only way to breach the lightning chains. I would ask Mastengwe, but she is still recovering from the ordeal. Perhaps you could scout the area for us?” Captain Jimila asked. “You want this one to kill some Maomer, sneak into their den, and rescue your crew?” Sinjaro clarified. “I wasn’t willing to go that far, but you seem capable. If you can manage it, the Prowler would be forever in your debt.” “This one does not like it. But Sinjaro could use a good hunt,” the Khajiit shrugged. “Then I wish you well, walker.” Sinjaro hurried off the ship, heading in the direction Jimila had pointed. Zephron followed closely, feet stepping silently behind him. As Sinjaro drew close to the island where the other ship was beached, the wind picked up around him. A storm was brewing, one he was supposed to stop. Maormer patrolled the area, scavenging and looting. Sinjaro skirted around the majority of them, but there was a pair he couldn’t seem to get by. On the other side of them, he could feel a power calling to him, reaching out, and as rain fell around him, the Khajiit spied a blue light reaching into the sky. A skyshard. He was going to get that shard. And these two Maomer were not going to stop him. Setting an arrow to the string of his bow, the Khajiit studied his prey. A dual-wielder and a mage. His fur would have stood on end had he not already been soaked to the bone by the rain. That mage was his priority. Sending Zephron to sneak around the two, Sinjaro stood and loosed his first arrow. It sailed into the mage’s gut, the Sea Elf crying out in pain. Instantly his companion was alert, charging toward Sinjaro. Zephron jumped between the two, her electricity seeming to do nothing against these enemies. Sinjaro saw a faint yellow glow pulsing from the duelist’s wrist. It had to be a lodestone. Rolling under an attack, the Khajiit loosed another arrow at the mage, catching her in the shoulder. This time she stayed down, allowing Sinjaro to focus on the Elf that was attacking once more. A swipe across his stomach dealt little damage, his jack preventing most of it. Grabbing a third arrow, Sinjaro launched the projectile into the Maomer’s unprotected face from mere feet away, smiling in grim satisfaction as the Elf dropped. It was the second time he had killed someone, and Sinjaro’s blood was boiling., the call of the hunt strong in him. Yet his wolf stayed down. No matter. There was bound to be more blood before he was finished. As the skyshard shared its power with him, Sinjaro saw the missing piece of the arrows falling from the sky. A simple burst of energy, timed right, would break an arrow in midair, allowing shrapnel to fall over an area. He smiled, pleased with his new knowledge, even as he pushed deeper into the storm. Crawling up a line of rocks beside the ship, the Khajiit paused, spying a Sea Elf standing in the middle of the deck. Lightning poured out of the elf, winds swirling in an endless vortex. This was not someone Sinjaro wanted to fight, even with the lodestone he had claimed from his victims. Silently, Sinjaro crept to the left, toward the bow of the ship, where he had seen a tall serpent statue. It had to be where one of the privateers were being held. Sure enough, there was a Khajiit held bound by a lattice of lightning. Holding out the lodestone, Sinjaro winced as electricity ran into his talisman. “These Maomer are insane!” the other Khajiit yelped over the noise of the storm. He ran toward the main deck, Sinjaro hoping that he would slip past the Sea Elf unharmed. No, that was unacceptable. Sinjaro needed to make sure. He stepped out of hiding, Launching an arrow into the air. With a short burst of energy, the arrow exploded, showering down upon the storm mage. Zephron leapt into battle as Sinjaro launched another arrow, barely dodging a bolt of magical ice. They made short work of the elf, Sinjaro ending the fight with an arrow in the chest. As the mage fell, the violent storm ceased abruptly, the ritual aborted by the absence of two pieces. Sinjaro was breathing heavily, the smell of blood strong. The wolf was growing within him again; he just needed one more push. Collecting the mage’s staff, the Khajiit hurried to the stern of the ship, freeing the other crew member. Together they hurried off the ship, Sinjaro leading him to the Prowler. It wasn’t long before he was standing before the captain once more, the sky lightening in predawn splendor. “Suhr and Virkvild are returned to us, shaken, wet, but physically unharmed,” Jimila said. “My lookout says I can thank you for that.” Sinjaro nodded, not trusting his voice. He could feel the wolf prowling within him. If he shifted forms now, it would be disastrous for all involved. “Your marine friends stopped a band of Maomer from reaching the ship,” Jimila added with a smile. “All of you are welcome on the Prowler any time. Perhaps we will see each other someday in Mistral. Until then, please accept this and our sincere thanks.” The Khajiit captain handed Sinjaro a small bag full of coins, and a large wooden shield. Sinjaro smiled, accepting the gifts. He would make good use of them in Mistral.
  8. I am once again going through a period of restlessness. This means that I have been jumping from story to story. What I would like to know is, since I have recently taken a liking to fanfictions, should I start on a Neverwinter fan fiction, or should I stick with Sinjaro?

    1. drpaladin


      My opinion is you have more than enough pending stories on your plate. 

  9. Yeoldebard

    Elven Advice

    In this universe it seems tge opposite is true. Elias was a calico as is Damian.
  10. Yeoldebard

    The Howl

    Jordan drank another glass of water, feeling frustrated. He’d just blacked out, it wasn’t like he was dying. Yet Lysander had left him at the hospital while he took Damian and the baby back to the apartment. There were other things Jordan could be doing, like picking up food for the baby. But here he sat, alone in another examination room, waiting for a doctor to tell him he was free to go. And there it was, the knock on the door. He set the paper cup aside, glaring as he waited for the door to open. “Knock knock,” Lysander said, stepping into the room. Strange, he was expecting the doctor. Still, Lysander gave him someone to blow off steam with. “So, am I allowed to leave now?” Jordan demanded. “No.” “What the fuck do you mean no? I sat down, I drank the-” Lysander crossed the room in an instant, finger pressing against Jordan’s lips. Grabbing the man’s wrist, he pulled Jordan out of his seat and pushed him back against the wall. “No arguing with the doctor,” the elf grinned. “You’re not-” Cool, slender fingers wrapped around Jordan’s throat, Lysander cupping the man’s jaw lightly. Still, it had the desired effect, Jordan fighting to swallow against the pressure. “Now?” he breathed hoarsely, the word grating in his ears. “Oh no, this is just a warm up,” Lysander denied, pressing his lips into Jordan’s. His free hand ran down the man’s torso, stroking the werewolf’s growing bulge. “Just… a little… tease…” Each word was punctuated with a slight squeeze, Jordan letting out the tiniest whimper. Stepping back, Lysander released him, Jordan stumbling slightly. “Now we can go. But no more surprises for you today.” “I… yeah…” Jordan blinked and swallowed, clearing his throat. “Let’s get out of here,” he muttered. They drove in silence, Jordan scowling the entire way. Lysander had gone shopping before picking him up, buying everything Jordan had been planning to get. Sure it saved them time and money, but they were supposed to work together to raise Damian’s son. “So tell me, are you more upset that I did it on my own, or that I didn’t ask first?” Lysander smiled at the guard as she waved them through, the truck rumbling into the complex. “What the fuck is that supposed to mean?” “Oh, well if you look at everything since we met, you haven’t exactly been the head wolf. I think it might be grating on you. I can certainly accept some blame for that; I enjoy taking care of others and I’ve naturally taken over that aspect of our relationship. It hasn’t really left much for you to do.” “We’ve known each other for two days. I hardly think you can know me that well in such a short time. I don’t need to be ‘head wolf’. I don’t want to be any wolf.” Lysander shut off the truck with a shrug. “Wrong choice of words. I’m sorry,” he said. “Look, it’s barely two in the afternoon. Why don’t we take everything inside and maybe you and I can go out for lunch.” “I don’t think so. I want to make sure Damian is doing okay. He did just become a father.” Lysander nodded, opening the door. Jordan darted around the truck, lifting a large box off the back. Lysander chuckled quietly, hoisting a pink bag over his shoulder. His arms tensed with the weight and Jordan realized he had been given the lighter burden. Grumbling quietly, the man carried the crib to the apartment, scowling at any curious faces. “Hey Karen,” Lysander smiled at a woman as they neared their apartment. “Hey there. You helping someone move in?” “Oh no, he moved in with me two days ago. We just picked up a few more things.” The woman’s smile turned into a slight frown at the implications. “Congratulations you two,” she said before hurrying away. Lysander sighed, shaking his head. “Woman’s been after me since I moved in,” he said. “I’m surprised she didn’t know yet,” Jordan scoffed. “Why would she?” “Well Damian’s ex sure seemed to know we were living together.” “Nekos are a very social race. They tend to know a lot about what happens with other nekos, even when that neko happens to be in a different city,” Lysander shrugged. The elf unlocked their apartment, stepping inside. Jordan followed, a stench driving into his nose. The werewolves both gagged. “I think he pooped… we don’t have any nappies,” Damian said, seated on the floor. “I’m working on it Damian!” Arisa called from down the hall. “Don’t worry, I picked some up,” Lysander said, letting the bag fall onto the couch. “I don’t know what I’m doing… I’m a horrible father-” Jordan set the crib aside, taking the small neko from Damian so the cat could stand. “I got him,” Lysander said, Jordan passing the baby to him. Jordan helped Damian to his feet, his arms wrapping tightly around the neko as Arisa came out of the hall. “Uh, that’s not how you change a baby,” she said, watching Lysander. “I am rather new to this. Maybe you could show us?” Lysander suggested. As Arisa crossed the room, Jordan took Damian aside. “You aren’t a horrible father,” he said quietly. “We just weren’t prepared for this.” “I can’t even figure out a name for him.” “Hey, it’s okay. Everything is okay Damian.” The neko laughed weakly. “Sorry, I’m a mess…” he hiccoughed. “Well who wouldn’t be? Here we thought you were this innocent little kitten and now you have a child,” Arisa spoke up, handing the clean baby back to Lysander. Jordan glared at her over Damian’s shoulder. “That’s not helping.” Someone knocked on the door suddenly, cutting through the noise of the apartment. “Damian, can you get that? Jordan and I need to set up the crib for sialena,” Lysander said. Damian took his son from Lysander, Arisa shaking her head. “I’ll get the door,” she said as Jordan picked up the crib. Following Lysander into the elf’s room, Jordan set the box down. “You really are a sweetheart under all that anger,” Lysander smirked. “Not too loud or the elves will hear…” “Too late…” He stepped into Jordan, walking him back against a wall. Jordan kissed the wolf gently, the anxiety of the day seeming to melt away under Lysander’s gaze. “You seem to like your walls,” he said. “They’re rather convenient. I think everyone will be using walls someday,” Lysander chuckled. “Aerael, I know we’ve only known each other for two days, but would you consider officially becoming my mate?” Jordan chewed on his lip, staring into the elf’s eyes. Slowly, he shook his head no. “I can’t. I’m with Damian-” “Wolves can have multiple mates. We both know this. Think about it at least?” Lysander pressed his lips against Jordan’s, his hands trailing over the man’s body. Suddenly he was yanked back, Arisa’s fist connecting with his eye. “What the fuck Arisa?” Jordan yelped. “Ey salei! He has a mate!” the elf snarled at Lysander. “Yeah, I do. Two of them. Why the hell would you come barging in here like that?!” “He was… you were… WHY THE FUCK DIDN”T YOU WARN ME?!” Jordan helped Lysander to his feet, the elf wincing as he touched his eye. “Are you okay?” he asked. “Yeah. Nice shot…” Lysander muttered. “Maybe you should go,” Jordan said, turning to Arisa. “I was-” Arisa let out a quiet sigh. “Yeah, maybe I should,” she agreed, leaving the room. “I’m going to get some ice for this. Why don’t you start setting the crib up?” Lysander followed the other elf out, Jordan groaning quietly. This was not his day… The werewolf lay curled up in his bed. The crib was built, Lysander was cared for, there was nothing else he had to do. He could hear them talking in the living room, smell the dinner Damian was cooking. But even that didn’t rouse him. Jordan just needed some time alone. The day had started out so nicely, taking that shower with Damian, playing with both of his mates. It was barely five in the evening. Jordan shouldn’t even be home yet and he was exhausted from the day. Lysander walked past the room, slipping into his bedroom. Moments later, he walked back out on all fours, pausing at Jordan’s door. “I doubt it will help,” Jordan said to the unvoiced question. Lysander shook his head slowly, walking away. Jordan sighed quietly, rolling over to curl up the other way. Minutes later, he heard the howling of a wolf, lonely and heartbreaking. The sound tore at his heart, drawing a response from his wolf. Pulling off his clothes, Jordan shifted, his wolf padding quietly out of the room. He found Damian sitting with silent tears in his eyes, gently rocking his son to sleep. “You heard?” the neko asked quietly. He hadn’t heard anything, only the call of the wolf. But as other wolves joined in, adding to the melancholy howl, Jordan knew he needed to be outside, with his pack. He slipped through the wolf door, a late summer breeze ruffling his fur as he stood, listening to the howls. Raising his head, the werewolf added his voice to the howls, another wolf paying his respects to the sad, the broken. It felt so freeing, getting his emotions out like this. Now he understood why wolves howled so often. The howls died down, Jordan laying on the ground in front of the door. He didn’t really want to go back inside, not yet. A body dropped beside him, Lysander sniffing at the wolf. Jordan huffed quietly, laying his head back on his feet. He felt like crying, and he didn’t know why. Both Damian and Lysander seemed upset, and he wondered if it had to do with the howl. A lone wolf walked past, ears low and tail between her legs. She paused, looking at Jordan and Lysander. The white wolf stood up, and the other wolf turned her head, letting out a long and mournful howl. They joined in, for how could they not? A song for the departed, Jordan realized, for a mate who would never come home. As the wolf moved on, another howl finished, Jordan stood up, returning indoors. He walked slowly through the apartment, ignoring Damian’s eyes watching him. Nosing open the door to the bathroom, Jordan entered the room, hind legs closing the door behind him. He shifted, getting into the tub before turning the hot water on. It scalded him, liquid fire washing his inner pain away with outer. Slowly, the werewolf added cold water, sitting to let the rain fall over him. There was a thump at the door and it opened, Lysander poking his nose inside. “Come in,” Jordan said quietly, moving back in the tub. Lysander closed the door, padding silently to the tub. He jumped in, sitting in front of Jordan before letting his body switch to his elf form. “Do you know what happened?” the elf asked. “Her mate died.” Lysander nodded. “Most of the pack was out there tonight. It’s hard on us all, but it hits her the hardest. She and Jacob were nearly inseparable.” Lysander leaned back slowly, Jordan wrapping his arms around him. “That was Sara?” The elf nodded, confirming Jordan’s fears. The officer Halor had shot… Jacob had gone to get the money back from him. “Do you know what it means to take the Bane?” Lysander questioned. “No…” “Wolf’s bane is poisonous to us. If we take small doses, mixed with certain curatives, it puts our wolves to sleep for a time.” Lysander took a deep breath, trembling in Jordan’s arms. “But… But in larger doses, it is lethal. A wolf who loses their mate can go on, but often they feel like they can’t. Either they recover from the death and live the rest of their life alone… or they take the Bane.” “She wants to,” Jordan said quietly. A sob escaped the elf, Lysander turning until he was curled up in Jordan’s arms. “Sh- She’s going to wait the day out… She has to, it’s pack law. But she wants me to give it to her.” “Why you?” “I was the one who introduced them,” Lysander choked. “I helped them find each other. Sara said it would make her feel better if I was there for the end as well.” Jordan held him tightly as Lysander cried into his chest. “I don’t want to kill my best friend!” “Then don’t. She can’t ask you to do this.” “I don’t- I can’t… I have to be there for her. I love her too much to let her face this on her own.” He hiccoughed into Jordan’s body, his tears mixing with the water. “It… I just feel like… like she shouldn’t have told me, you know? Because now I have to mourn for her twice. And I hate that I feel that way. She’s fucking dying and I can’t handle a little emotional stress for her…” Jordan was silent, running his fingers gently through Lysander’s hair. He wasn’t sure what he should do or say, but fingers in his scalp had always felt good to him, and he hoped the feeling would help Lysander. “I’m sorry. You probably came in here to be alone,” Lysander said quietly. “I can still support you even when I’m down. Don’t ever be afraid to lean on me Lysander.” His lips pressed lightly into the elf’s head, Lysander’s eyes closing as his legs stretched out. His body still shook in Jordan’s arms, tiny sobs eventually giving way to soft snores as the elf cried himself to sleep.
  11. He stood over his assailant, blood dripping from his maw. Throwing back his head, Sinjaro let out a triumphant howl, a howl that echoed through the cave. He had finally killed the wolf that made him who he was. It had been nearly a year since he had found himself in Hircine’s Hunting Grounds, a year since he had given his soul to the Daedric Prince in exchange for the power that would allow him to kill the Nord who had attacked him. “The pup becomes a wolf, the hunter hunted, as it should be…” The voice of the Prince echoed in his mind, the words he had heard a year ago, after his first kill. And as he feasted on the fallen werewolf, Sinjaro rejoiced in his successful hunt. “This is why we can’t have nice things…” The werewolf shook his head, tearing a chunk of guts from his kill as he tried to get rid of the other voice in his head, the voice of his Khajiit self. The other Sinjaro had no place here. It was too late. Once the voice broke through, transformation was never far behind. Clenching his teeth, Sinjaro held back a yelp as his body convulsed, returning to the cat he truly was. Before, his transformations would leave him writhing in pain for minutes. Not anymore. He was stronger, better able to withstand the change. And resist it. Now if only he could keep his mind when he shifted forms… The tortoiseshell Khajiit stood up, brushing himself off. He needed to get to a town soon; his clothes were just rags at this point. Leave it to a Nord to try to find sanctuary in a filthy cave. Collecting his bow and quiver from where he had stashed them, Sinjaro began walking, another thing he had gotten better at in the last year. From a simple Khajiit chef to a fearsome werewolf. Who could have seen that coming? “Not this one,” he chuckled grimly, breathing in the scent of the sea nearby. It was such a good smell, full of fish and salt. He was enjoying this island of Auridon. But he still couldn’t wait to get home to Khenarthi’s Roost. Though could he really claim that as his home anymore? He had always venerated the Hungry Cat, for what cat hunted better than one who was hungry? But now he had accepted Lord Hircine’s gifts, and would never feel the warm hand of Khenarthi guiding him to the Sands-Beyond-the-Stars. He supposed it didn’t matter now. He was alive, and such questions were better answered by wiser heads than his. He was Sinjaro, hunter of Hadvar the Werewolf, Sinjaro Five-claw, Sinjaro… who had just stepped on a sharp rock. “Ziss!” Grabbing his foot, Sinjaro stumbled and fell to the ground. He examined the wound, glaring as a pair of Altmer laughed, walking past. “Dark Moons take you!” he called after the elves. “Jekosiit…” Pulling off his boots, Sinjaro tossed them to the side. The soles were so thin they would do no good. He could hear the sounds of a city nearby. Hopefully he could get a new pair there. The Khajiit followed a tall cliff, walking through warm sands and listening to the ocean waves break against the narrow shore. He wriggled his toes in the sand, enjoying the sensation. It would take ages to get the dirt out of his claws later but for now he didn’t care. A cool breeze ruffled his fur, his tail swishing amicably as he walked. The incident with the Altmer was behind him already, no harm done to anything but his pride. A ship came into view slowly, bobbing gently at its mooring. The docks followed, Sinjaro letting out a quiet sigh of relief. He could use a good bath, maybe a nice bed for the night… Though he didn’t have much in the way of coin. He shrugged. He was a Khajiit, no? He would just do as a Khajiit does. A hooded figure approached the Khajiit, Sinjaro squinting suspiciously. Dark Moons these Altmer were good. He had only thought about stealing something and they were already coming for him. “Ah, you look rather capable,” the figure said. “My benefactor has a job offer for you, Khajiit.” “And what might your benefactor desire from a simple Khajiit?” “The message is for your ears only. He waits for you in the bunks of the Interim Suitor,” the figure pointed to a ship at the docks. Sinjaro chuckled. “Perhaps he should offer this one a drink before asking to bed Sinjaro.” “You can take the offer or not. I do not have time to waste with you.” “Very well, this one will speak to your benefactor.” Nodding in farewell, the two parted, Sinjaro directing his feet onto a wooden boardwalk. Maybe this job would pay well. He knew the figure had taken note of his scar when she saw him, so clearly she was looking for someone who could handle a dangerous job. But he was a werewolf. What could be dangerous to him, besides another werewolf? Besides, he didn’t exactly have a plan, now that Hadvar was finally dead. Sinjaro’s nails clicked on the wood of the ship, a pair of masked men guiding him toward the lower deck of the ship. He was a little wary of the two, but he stepped down the stairs anyway. He knew something they didn’t know. If it came to a fight, he was prepared. He stumbled slightly through the ship, his feet unaccustomed to the motion of the waves. Catching himself on a doorway, Sinjaro looked inside, finding a Redguard bound and gagged in a chair. “Mmmph!” “Wha-” Sinjaro spun, his wolf springing to the front of his mind, but before he could shift, the masked men had knocked him out cold. Images flashed through his mind, being chained, forced to follow other prisoners down a flight of stairs, watching as an Altmer stabbed a man, the soul being trapped in a gem. Sinjaro felt a great pain in his chest and then cold. Wet. He sat up, opening his eyes to a dark and blue world. Sinjaro’s chest hurt, but when he looked down at his threadbare clothing, he saw nothing that told him the source of the pain. Rising to his feet, the Khajiit began looking around his small cell, trying to figure out what had just happened. His bow was gone, naturally. What captors would leave a prisoner his weapons? Sinjaro considered himself lucky he was dressed. “Wafiit… Jer vara ma’i…” he muttered, smacking his head. “Whoa, you okay there?” Looking up, Sinjaro saw a huge Nord woman, with an equally large battleaxe on her back, standing outside his cell. “This one must have hit his head too hard…” he muttered, staring at the breasts that were level with his eyes. “To see Jone and Jode so close…” “The name’s Lyris. Let’s see about getting you out of that cell,” the woman said, ignoring his comment as she pulled her axe out. With one mighty swing, she struck the side of the gate locking Sinjaro within the cell. With a creaking groan, the gate fell open. Sinjaro knew enough to take the offered escape, leaping out of his cage. He felt a tugging at his mind, like that of his wolf, but… different somehow. Ignoring the giant Nord as she searched a nearby corpse, Sinjaro focused on the alien presence. “Take this help and learn to hunt with a new power.” Lord Hircine’s voice rang through his mind, startling Sinjaro. He felt a power surge through his body, pulling at another mind until a dark figure appeared before him, a senche-panther familiar he had seen at one point in the Hunting Grounds. “Zephron…” he named her. The familiar stretched, a tiny mewl escaping her maw. She was another gift from the Hunter Cat, one Sinzarin was certain would make for a good hunting companion. “If you would rather go without a weapon-” Lyris said, holding a huge sword. “This one would rather be armed, even if Sinjaro can not use the weapon,” Sinjaro said, accepting the blade. It was surprisingly lighter than he expected, and he was able to swing the blade without much effort, though he couldn’t seem to swing straight. “Let’s go,” Lyris said, unimpressed. Sinjaro followed the Nord, mentally asking Zephron to walk ahead of him. “Where are we?” he asked. “The Wailing Prison. You are a prisoner of Molag Bal.” A prisoner of a Daedric Prince? That should be impossible. He was bound to Hircine… which would explain why Hircine was aiding him in escaping… An apparition appeared before them, of a hooded man with milky eyes. Sinjaro took a step back, holding his sword in front of him. This man didn’t look dangerous, but then the blind ones usually knew magic. “The Prophet!” Lyris gasped. “Greetings Vestige. Like you, I am a prisoner in this place. You must rescue me, and I, in turn, must rescue you,” the man said, looking straight at Sinjaro. Well, if the giant Nord knew him and he knew Sinjaro, he must be okay. Though the Khajiit had no idea how the man knew him. Without warning, the man vanished again, freeing the path to a door. As Sinjaro took a step forward, Lyris stopped him. “Hold a moment, come here. We need to talk.” “This one thinks talking should come after escape, no?” Sinjaro said. “That was the Prophet. It was dangerous for him to talk to you. He must think you can help me.” “Help you with what?” “Breaking him out of course. Believe me, I could use all the help I can get. And before you ask what that has to do with you,” Lyris said, holding up a hand, “that blind old man is the only one who can get you home. Tamriel is a long way from here.” Glancing at the door, the Nord added, “That passage should take us to the Tower of Eyes. If we can destroy one of the Sentinels guarding it, perhaps we could break into the Prophet’s cell undetected.” Sinjaro shook his head. There were so many things that could go wrong with her plan. Still, it wasn’t like he had any ideas. He would have to follow her lead. Passing through the door, they saw a Daedra holding a man by the throat. “Ziss…” Sinjaro groaned as the man was thrown across the room to be impaled on a spike. What he wouldn’t give for a bow right now… Lyris charged in, Sinjaro sending Zephron after her. To his surprise, the familiar began letting out a wave of electricity, the magic not seeming to affect Lyris. The middle of a battle was not the best place for surprises. He would have to ponder later. For now, Sinjaro leaped toward the Daedra as he turned, his sword smacking into the creature’s legs. The Daedra stumbled, allowing Lyris to slam her axe into its head. “Well played friend. Arkay’s beard, you are good in a fight,” Lyris panted. “The God of Brutality knows of your escape. Hurry,” the Prophet said around them. Heeding his advice, they hurried, passing through another door. Standing on a platform on the other side of the door, Sinjaro scanned the world around him. A river ran through the cold, dead, grey land, a small bridge leading over the waters to a rise in the land. That seemed like a good location for someone to watch the land from. “The God of Schemes can see all of Coldharbour. We need to distract him,” Lyris said beside him. Nodding, Sinjaro started forward, Lyris and Zephron following him as he moved through the land. Crossing the bridge, the Khajiit began walking up the hill, crouching down as he neared the top. A large orb spun slowly up ahead, blue light shining from it. It had to be one of the Sentinels Lyris had mentioned. “Try to be inconspicuous,” Lyris hissed. “We just got free of this place. The last thing we want is to be captured again.” “This one thinks you might want to be more quiet then,” Sinjaro muttered, before creeping forward, sword in hand. Waiting for the light to pass around, Sinjaro darted forward, slashing the back of the orb with his blade. It exploded into darkness, Sinjaro stumbling back. The Khajiit spun and sprinted down the hill, spearing a Daedra through the gut with his sword as he ran into it. He struggled to retrieve the weapon, giving up as Lyris ran past him. “Quickly, while he’s blinded! We must get to the Prophet’s Cell!” Sinjaro followed the Nord, rushing toward a cell door. They had done it. That had been easy. The cell door erupted in flames, a voice laughing at them. “Fools! You will never escape my realm!” “Herma-Mora’s wagging tongue!” Lyris snapped. “This one thought it was too easy,” Sinjaro sighed. “The Sentinel must have triggered the ward. We’ll have to find another way in.” “Did you think there wouldn’t be a countermeasure?” Lyris ignored him. Sinjaro was getting really tired of her not listening. But for now, he was stuck with her. “Maybe Cadwell will help us…” “And who is this Cadwell?” “Cadwell is the oldest of the Soul Shriven. After years of torment, most Soul Shriven go insane. Cadwell was already insane before he got here. Mad as a box of frogs, but completely harmless. You’ll see.” “A mad man… Wonderful…” They moved south, Sinjaro searching for a new weapon as he walked. He came across a new recipe for jasmine tea, tucking it into a pocket, but there were no weapons to be found. “One fine day in the middle of the night, two dead kings got up to fight…” Sinjaro glanced at Lyris. That certainly sounded like the kind of thing a crazy man would sing. They entered a small camp full of Soul Shriven, finding one of them with a pot on his head, strumming a lute with a grin on his face. “Hullo, what’s this then? Out for a stroll, hmm? Lovely day for it.” “Cadwell?” Sinjaro asked. “Sir Cadwell, yes indeed, a pleasure. And fair Lyris! Good to see you m’dear,” the madman exclaimed cheerfully. “We’re trying to get into the Prophet’s Cell, but the door is warded,” Lyris explained. “Oh dear, oh dear, that is rather inconvenient. Tell you what, I happen to know of a back entrance, a rather scenic route in fact. Full of traps, and corpses, and other little beasties filling in the bits between. “ “And how would we get through all of these things?” “Rather cautiously I’d expect,” Cadwell said thoughtfully. “Watch your step, hold your nose, and do mind the traps. There’ll like as not be a fair amount of running and skull bashing as well.” “Could you tell us where the entrance is?” “Oh, just follow the river. You’ll find the door to the Undercroft at the water’s end. Once inside, stick to the light, and you’ll find a ladder that will take you to the Prophet straight away. Do give him my best!” Waving them off with a smile, Cadwell turned his attention back to his lute, plucking out another nonsensical tune. As the two left him, Lyris sighed. “Cadwell seems to think this place is delightful. Probably means it’s a death trap. We’d better be careful.” “Actually, this one was thinking of stopping to take a nap in there,” Sinjaro said. Lyris glared at him. “Perhaps we better travel separately,” she said, running off. “This one was only joking. Maybe.” A nap did sound nice. Perhaps when their lives weren’t in danger though. Sending Zephron to scout ahead, Sinjaro followed the giant Nord, humming Cadwell’s tune to himself. It was rather catchy. He found Lyris banging on a metal door with her axe. Shaking his head, Sinjaro stopped the giant, his fingers delicately plucking a lockpick out of her pockets. Grunting, Lyris stepped aside to let him work. Sinjaro was grateful for the week of lessons he had taken from Riften’s Thieves’ Guild in exchange for nabbing a gem. It hadn’t even been that difficult of a heist. The Dunmer were entirely too confident in their magic. Magic that didn’t affect a thick coated werewolf nearly that much. “The sooner you get that door open-” “Perhaps you could be silent and let this one work, yes?” He felt through the lock carefully, finding a binding pin easily. Lifting it, the Khajiit searched out the rest, the lock clicking open in seconds. Standing, he pushed the door open wide. “I knew the Khajiit could pick the lock,” Lyris grunted, walking past. “Hmmddrrr…” Sinjaro stopped himself. He didn’t need to attack the Nord. That would spell disaster for them both. But soon, very soon, she’d get what was coming… Following the Nord into the Undercroft, Sinjaro’s eyes widened at the sight of a bow next to a fully stocked quiver. Those were his… Darting forward, the Khajiit rolled under a skeleton that attacked from the side. Zephron attacked the skeleton, electricity filling the air around her as Sinjaro strung the bow. He turned around as the skull rolled past him, an arrow on the string of his bow. Zephron trotted past him, Lyris following the familiar. He let them have their moment of glory. The next kill would be his… They wandered through the Undercroft, Sinjaro mindful to keep near the light. One other skeleton came after them, but he was able to knock its head off with an arrow while Zephron scratched at its legs. Ducking between twin streams of blue flame, Sinjaro paused before a doorway. “The Prophet’s cage should be just ahead! Quickly, we haven’t much time!” Sinjaro shook his head as Lyris hurried inside. He followed close behind, finding the Nord standing before a large force field floating above the ground. A man hovered inside the field, the same man that had appeared before them earlier. “He is real. This one must confess he is surprised,” Sinjaro said. “Yes, he’s real, and he appears unharmed. Now the bad news. It will be up to you to keep him safe.” “Sinjaro must not have heard you correctly. Is the Prophet not your friend?” “There is a trick to getting the Prophet out of that cage. The only way for a prisoner to leave is for another living soul to take their place. I need to swap places with the Prophet.” Sinjaro frowned at the Nord. This is why he hated magic. Too many rules. “Surely there is another way.” “Believe me, I wish there was. But I don’t see anyone else here with a beating heart,” Lyris said. “This one has a heart-” Sinjaro paused, setting his hand against his chest. The pain had certainly diminished, but it was still there. He couldn’t feel his heartbeat either. “Sinjaro’s heart is not beating…” he said in alarm. “Took you long enough to notice that. Once it’s done, get moving. The Prophet will know where to go, but he’ll need your eyes and your protection.” Sinjaro nodded, still trying to accept that his heart had stopped somehow. Lyris stepped into a stone circle on the ground and a blue glow surrounded her, picking her up into the air. She screamed in pain as a Daedra appeared. Zephron charged, Sinjaro providing ranged support. The Dadra fell quickly, only for a second one to appear behind Sinjaro. “Mor kha’jay!” The Daedra’s claws caught him in the gut, knocking him off balance. Zephron rushed past him, distracting the Daedra long enough for Sinjaro to put an arrow in its head. Two pinions appeared, small glowing orbs within a broken cube. As Sinjaro held his hand near one, it snapped shut, dropping into the ground. He repeated the process with the other pinion, and Lyris cried out again as she was suddenly catapulted into the cage, the Prophet taking her place outside. “Freedom! I remember this feeling…” the old man said, straightening with the aid of a staff. “Thank the Divines you are safe! There is that, at least. Lyris sacrificed everything that we might go free. Her sacrifice must not be in vain.” “This one does wonder if there is a way we might take her with us?” “I wish that were possible. But I promise, once we escape Coldharbour, we will find a way to rescue her together, Vestige.” “You called Sinjaro Vestige before. Why?” “That is the name I have given you. You are but a trace of your former self, a soulless one. A vessel that longs to be filled. It is as the Elder Scrolls foretold, though not how I imagined it.” “All these jetwijijri wanting to fill Sinjaro but not wanting to have dinner first. Does this one look like an easy Khajiit…?” “Quickly now, we must make haste to the Anchor. The Anchors are Daedric machines of the darkest magic. Their chains bind our world and pull it toward Coldharbour. I can use one of these anchors to take us back to Tamriel, but you must lead me to it, up the stairs!” He was rather perceptive for a blind man. Sinjaro wondered if he had seen the stairs before he went blind. Who knew how long ago that was? “You may take Sinjaro’s tail if you must. But no tugging,” the Khajiit said. He led the blind man up the stairs and into another chamber, where they found a circle with four giant chains hanging from it. “The Anchor Mooring!” the Prophet exclaimed. Shaking his head, Sinjaro continued forward. Suddenly the ground shook, a giant hand sprouting from it. “A mortal thinks it can defy me? Futile. Soon your world will be in my chains.” Sinjaro shuddered as he realised Molag Bal was speaking to him. If he was to fight a Daedric Prince, he wasn’t about to do it in this body… His body trembled as a giant construct crawled out of the ground. With a snarl, Sinjaro let his wolf take over, lunging at the giant. In seconds, it was over, the colossus lying broken on the ground. Sinjarin broke off mid howl as a hand touched him, forcing a state of calm into his mind. The werewolf melted back into his Khajiit body once more. “A moment Vestige,” the Prophet said. “The Anchor’s portal is high above us. I will prepare a spell to lift us to it, but first you must re-attune yourself to Nirn with a skyshard to regain your physical form.” “What is a skyshard?” “A piece of Aetherial magicka that carries the essence of Nirn. If you collect one and absorb its power, it should restore your corporeal form. I shall summon one for you.” Collecting power? Sinjaro was intrigued. He had just made a rather powerful enemy. Perhaps these skyshards would allow him to survive the Daedric Prince’s wrath. “There. Quickly, collect the skyshard.” It shone with a blue light, rising into the sky like a beacon. Reaching out his hand, Sinjaro touched the skyshard. He was bathed in light, the power of the shard lifting into the air. It was filling him with a warm glow, energy coursing through his body. He felt alive. Landing back on the ground as the glow faded, Sinjaro found the Prophet slamming his staff against the ground, perilously close to the edge of the anchor. Another glow appeared, and the Prophet reached blindly for the Khajiit. Clasping hands, the two rose into the air, Sinjaro crying out in surprise. He did not like this method of travel at all.
  12. All this one ever wanted was to be left to his cooking. A born hunter, Sinjaro is known in the ruined fort of Eagle's Strand as one of the best cooks around. But when he is attacked by a werewolf on a hunt, his life changes. A year later, he is finally returning home from the hunt, a successful hunter. Unfortunately, Sinjaro is about to be caught in another hunt, one that could change the fate of Nirn itself
  13. Yeoldebard

    Siala Kalael

    Oh, he was. But he also knew how it happened.
  14. Yeoldebard

    Siala Kalael

    Arisa grilled him during the ride to the complex, questions pouring from her like water from a hose. Jordan answered her as best he could, grateful when they finally reached the complex gate. Someone was standing at the gate, body covered by a cloak. Jordan stared at the figure. Who wore a cloak any more? Those had been out of style for centuries. The guard held up his hands as Arisa and Jordan pulled up. “Look, miss, I can’t help you-” “I know he shacked up with a wolf and this is the only place he’d end up! Now you tell Damian to get his tail out here before I cut it off!” Jordan frowned, reaching to unbuckle his belt. Arisa grabbed his hand. “Don’t. She’s probably talking about someone else,” she said quietly. Pulling his hand away, Jordan opened the door. “Excuse me, are you looking for a neko?” he asked. The woman whirled around. She held a blue bundle in her arms, a permanent scowl on her face. “Yes I am!” “Well I happen to be the wolf he ‘shacked up’ with-” “Good. You can give this to him then. I will not have this abomination in my family.” The woman shoved the bundle into Jordan’s arms, the wolf stumbling backward. He looked downward, seeing a tiny face in the blanket. “What the fuck-? Hey!” He stared at the retreating figure, spotting a brown tail falling out of the cloak. “Hey wait!” A weak cry escaped the blanket. “Fuck. Fuck fuck fuck…” The guard looked at him in sympathy. “You can enter,” he said, opening the gate. Jordan carefully sat in the car, still looking at the fleeing neko. “Did they just-?” Arisa looked at the baby in Jordan’s arms. “Do you want me to go after-” “No, just… I don’t know. Gods this is fucked up… Lysander will know what to do.” Arisa shook her head, pulling into the complex. Jordan stared at the infant as they got out of the car. He was so tiny, so fragile. “Jordan?” “Huh?” He looked up at Arisa. “Where are we going?” the elf questioned. “Right…” He began walking, conscious of every step. What the hell was wrong with today? Everything was just so fucked up. Stopping in front of the apartment door, Jordan kicked at it, not wanting to move his hands. “Here,” Arisa said, knocking on the door loudly. The apartment next door opened, a pale face poking out. “Who’s that?” Arisa asked. “Fuck if I know,” Jordan muttered. Arisa waved slightly, and the person vanished, the door shutting fast. Jordan flinched as Damian answered Arisa’s knock, startling him. “Jordan? I thought you were still… What’s that?” Jordan shouldered past the neko, scanning the room. Lysander trotted out of his room in his fur, pausing as he sniffed the air. Arisa stepped inside, her eyes copying Jordan’s. She paused as she noticed the large white wolf in the hall. “Lysander…” Jordan breathed. The room was starting to spin around him, and the werewolf stumbled for the couch, clutching the baby in his arms protectively as he fell. “Jordan?! Jordan, wake up!” His eyes fluttered open. Damian’s face stared down at him, relief flooding the neko. “Wha…” A firm hand held him down as he tried to rise. “No, stay down. Take a few moments,” Lysander said gently. He could hear crying- the baby crying. “Lysander, the baby-” “Hush. Damian and I will figure everything out, okay? You don’t have to worry about a thing. Just stay here, and your friend will take care of you.” “Where-” “Don’t worry. We’ll be back soon.” Jordan fought to sit up. “No, I need to go…” “You’re in no condition to go anywhere,” Lysander denied. “You had a hard day-” “I’m not going to sit here worrying about what is happening.” Arisa laughed behind him, holding the baby. “This is rather entertaining,” she said. “I’m glad you met someone else who can boss you around.” Jordan scowled at the elves. “I’m going,” he said, standing up. Lysander nodded, handing him a glass of water. “Drink this first, then we’re going to the hospital,” he said, moving quickly through the apartment. “I have a carseat,” Arisa said. “Good, you can follow me. Damian, watch Jordan.” “I don’t need to be watched-” Jordan started. Lysander put a finger up to the man’s lips. “Humour me, okay? Right now we need to get this child to the hospital. We can argue later.” Jordan gulped down the water quickly, setting the glass aside. Damian took his hand, leading him outside as Lysander and Arisa followed. Ten minutes later, they were rushing into the hospital, Lysander leading them confidently down a hall. The group stopped in a waiting room, Lysander taking the baby from Arisa. He frowned at the bundle in his arms, approaching a window with an elf inside. “Hi, someone gave this infant to my friend about thirty minutes ago,” he said quickly. “I know that sounds weird, but we need to know what we should do. And my friend should be checked by a doctor. He’s been through a rather trying day.” To his credit, the man inside didn’t show his shock at the circumstances. “Give me one moment,” he said, standing up. A few minutes later, a neko approached them, a nametag announcing her as Nurse Jeric. “Hi, is this the child?” she asked. “Yes it is,” Lysander nodded. “Let’s go take a look, shall we?” She held out her arms, and Lysander carefully transferred the bundle to her. “Hi there little guy. You had us worried,” the neko smiled at the baby. Turning to the group, she added, “Can you come with me please? There are some questions I have to ask.” “Of course. Lead the way.” “The first question I have… Are you Damian?” Jordan and Damian shared a look of surprise at the question. “Um, yes,” the neko said nervously as Jordan placed a hand on his shoulder. They were sitting in a small examination room, Lysander standing against the wall. Arisa had left, Lysander pointing out that it wasn’t really the best time for visiting. “You can relax dear,” Jeric smiled. “You aren’t in any trouble. You are the subject of much gossip however. It isn’t often a neko mates with a werewolf, much less two of them.” There was a quiet knock at the door and an elf entered, a bottle of milk in hand. He handed it to the nurse, Jeric smiling in thanks. “I think you should do the honours,” she said, carefully handing Damian the baby. “Wait-” Damian protested weakly, his arms instictively cradling the child. “What’s going on?” Jordan demanded. “Well, it started when a young neko and her mother came in last night. As it turns out, the young neko was pregnant and the father was rumoured to be living with a wolf in Astara.” Jordan shared another look with Damian, an oh shit look. Gently, the neko placed the nipple of the bottle against the baby’s mouth, and the little neko began feeding. “When she gave birth, her mother insisted that she give the child up. Naturally, she protested. Her mother was not happy about that and to make a long story short, she stole the child, running off to find the father. Apparently she did, somehow.” “She… Is Jenna okay?” Damian whispered. “Oh, she’s doing well, all things considered. But she did agree that she wasn’t the best person to care for her child. She recommended you.” Silence took over the room, broken only by the quiet suckling noises from Damian’s arms. “I… I don’t-” Lysander knelt next to Damian, touching his knee. “Before you say anything Damian, I will help you with your child,” he said gently. “Yeah, I don’t know anything about kids, but I can learn,” Jordan added. Damian’s eyes closed, his lips mouthing words none could hear. Opening his eyes, he smiled uncertainly. “This isn’t really how I thought I’d learn I was a father…” he said. Jeric chuckled. “Congratulations you three. You have a healthy baby boy.”
  15. Yeoldebard


    Lysander drove them to work, smiling at the relaxed look on Jordan’s face. The human was feeling good. Maybe there was something to this whole werewolf sex thing. “So a little birdie told me you were planning a bake sale Damian,” Lysander said. “And no offense to Jordan’s lovely bike, but you won’t be carrying a bunch of biscuits on a motorcycle.” “We know,” Damian said. “We were actually thinking maybe you could help us with your truck?” “Hmm, I’ll have to see if my boyfriends will let me out of the apartment on my day off,” Lysander grinned. “Oh, just give them some of Damian’s nectar and I’m sure they’ll follow you anywhere,” Jordan said. “Gasp. Did our Jordan just make a joke about sex?” “I think you bring it out in me,” Jordan replied. “No, I think you two are trying to bring it out of me. Just give me a bit to recharge,” Damian smirked. “Who are you people and what did you do with my mates?” Lysander demanded. “I dunno. But I just feel so… So relaxed,” Jordan smiled, his eyes closing briefly. “Damian, did you get Jordan drunk?” “I… I don’t know. I’ve never really studied the effect of neko… neko juice in humans. Or werewolves,” Damian frowned, studying Jordan. “Guys, I’m fine, really.” Lysander pulled over, turning toward Jordan. “Look at me,” he said, staring at the werewolf. Jordan gazed into the elf’s eyes, losing himself in the blue, like the sky, floating through the sky… “Yeah, something happened,” Lysander said. “He didn’t do this the last time…” Damian fell quiet, ducking his head in embarrassment. “Don’t worry, I’m sure he’ll be okay.” “I got catnipped,” Jordan laughed. “But next time, we do this when you two don’t have work, okay?” Lysander added. They began moving again, Jordan leaning against Damian’s shoulder. This was a fun ride. He felt more normal by the time they neared the bookstore. Damian and Lysander still kept an eye on him as they pulled into the car park in front of the store. “Um, that does not look good,” Lysander said, pulling to a stop. “What the fuck?!” Jordan climbed over Damian, dropping out of the truck. The front window of the store had shattered, a large rock sitting inside. Sprayed in red paint above the window were the words Werewolf Lovers. “Fuck!” the man snapped. “Jordan, calm down. This is easily cleaned up,” Lysander said gently. “Let me call a friend and we’ll take care of it.” Damian took Jordan’s hand gently as the elf stepped away. “They’re seriously going to attack Ms Reyla because of me? This is fucked up.” “It is, but that’s on them, not you,” Damian said quietly. Minutes later a van pulled into the car park, a uniformed elf opening the side door. A wolf jumped out, trotting over to the trio. “Morning Jacob,” Lysander nodded. The wolf huffed, stepping carefully into the store. He began sniffing around as his partner set up yellow tape around the store. “I didn’t know Jacob was a city guard,” Damian said. “Yeah, his nose is pretty good,” Lysander replied, watching the wolf. “He should be able to tell us where the person who did this is.” “Why didn’t the Guard use a wolf at the apartment?” “I doubt there was much to smell other than ash,” Jordan muttered as another car arrived. Blanche stepped out of the car, frowning at the tape. “What happened?” “Looks like vandalism,” the elf officer said, taking pictures of the storefront. “Likely a hate crime.” “I promise I’ll pay for a new window,” Jordan said. “Don’t worry Aerael, I already took care of that,” Lysander interrupted. “Sara works at a glass store and she knows some friends who can have the window back up in less than a day.” Jordan frowned. “I can’t ask your friends to-” “Well it’s a good thing you didn’t ask,” Lysander said. “Thank you for your help Mister…” “Lysander,” the elf smiled, shaking Blanche’s hand. There was a loud bark from the store, and the officer hurried inside. He returned a moment later with Jacob sniffing around the store. “Someone broke into the office,” the elf said. “There should be a bag in there. I’m assuming that was taken?” Jordan asked. “I didn’t see it in there. We’ll try to find it,” the officer promised. Jacob woofed quietly, pointing down the road. The wolf detective had the trail. The officer left with Jacob, following the trail the wolf had found. It wasn’t long before a truck showed up with a couple of men in the back. They got to work quickly, assuring Jordan and Blanche that the window would be fixed by that evening. “Well, we’re not opening today,” Blanche sighed. “And we lost two days’ worth of earnings…” “Why don’t you head home? I can handle things here,” Jordan said. “That’s actually a good idea. Too many bodies will only get in the way,” Lysander pointed out. “Come on Damian, I’ll take you home. Maybe we can find something to do.” “You have a book on the Red Ghost-” Lysander chuckled lightly. “You are welcome to read it,” he said. “Call me when you need a ride Jordan.” “Don’t worry, I will. I don’t really feel like walking ten miles to get home,” Jordan replied. He watched as everyone drove away before entering the store. Grabbing a broom, the werewolf began cleaning the shattered glass. It was the only thing he felt he could do. Jordan had to turn away several people over the next hour. Every single one of them made his head hurt more. They were finally getting more business and this had to happen. One of the glass repairers knocked on the office door as Jordan set the last of the records in place. He was grateful none had been ruined. Small blessings. “We’ve done all we can today. I will be back early tomorrow to finish the installation,” the man said. “I can be here as early as I need to be,” Jordan replied. “Six will allow you to be open by ten.” “That works great,” Jordan smiled. “Thank you for your help.” “Eh, us wolves have to look out for each other,” the man brushed off. “You do the community a great service to be honest. Lot of us have been looking for a book store that has wolf related books.” “Really? I honestly didn’t realise that,” Jordan frowned. Now that he thought about it, there were a lot of werewolf books, enough to have them sorted by race. He wondered if Ms Reyla had anything to do with their supply of werewolf books. “Well, I’ll see you tomorrow morning.” “I’ll be here waiting,” Jordan replied, following the man out of the office. He found a guard waiting with a small sack in his hands and a grim look on his face. “We found the elf who did this,” the guard said, handing Jordan the sack. “Elf?” “Yeah. Named Halor.” Jordan scowled. He had suspected the elf, but he was still surprised the bastard had it in him to pull a stunt like this. “He worked here until a few days ago. Where is he?” “Dead,” the guard said flatly. “He shot at a guard.” “Fuck… Are they okay?” “They’re in the hospital. Other than that, I don’t know. If you’ll excuse me, I have things I need to do.” The guard left the store quickly, Jordan gaping at his retreating back. Halor was dead? And he had actually shot someone… Before he could get over his shock, Arisa barged into the store. “I got here as soon as I could. Are you okay?” she demanded, looking the werewolf over. “How- what- how did you-?” “Damian called me,” Arisa said, rolling her eyes. “Uh, yeah, we weren’t open when it happened,” Jordan replied. “You aren’t open, are you?” “Of course not-” “Good. Let’s go, I’m taking you home.” Arisa grabbed his wrist, nearly dragging the werewolf out of the store. “But… hold on, at least let me lock up the store,” Jordan protested. He hurried around the store, still in a bit of a daze from the news. Halor… He couldn’t believe it. Glancing at the sack of coins he still held in his hand, the werewolf huffed quietly. There was no way he was leaving it in the store again. He’d have to ask Ms Reyla where they were supposed to go. As he got into Arisa’s car, Jordan pulled out his phone, dialing. “Hello?” “Ms Reyla, they found the money,” Jordan said quickly. “Oh, good. Do they know who took it?” “Halor. He’s dead.” There was a long silence. “I see. Well, I can honestly say I never wanted this end for him.” “Me neither. What would you like me to do with the money?” “Keep it on you. I’ll show you where to put it tomorrow. And Jordan? Thank you. You are a good person.” “Thank you,” Jordan said quietly.
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