The whiptail was rewarded with praise and a treat, the basic response was good, but now he needed to consider how to get the whiptail to bite with a bit more force. While foes in the tournament would likely inspire a more vigorous response, Nerius didn't want to rely on that. What if someone entered a scuttle, or other small robot? Jumanji would likely only respond with a mild bite, and that would not be helpful against armored metal.
Well, there was no point in just standing there and thinking about it, might as well keep reinforcing the command. So Nerius held out the branch again, and gave the command "Crunch!" The bite was unimpressive, but.. what if he wiggled it? Made it seem like struggling prey? It was worth a shot, and he wiggled the branch, as if playing tug of war with a vulticus. The whiptail had a very different response than a canine, and wrapped her tail vine around the branch, getting a solid grip on it.
Once her grip was secure, she released the branch with her jaws. Seeing this, and that she was about to bite down again, Nerius repeated the command "Crunch!"
The whiptail's bite this time was much stronger than before, and the branch splintered. "Good murder vine!" That had worked better than he expected, and wanting to encourage the stronger bite, more worthy of being called a crunch, Nerius tossed the vinesnatcher two treats this time. The meat bits were gobbled up, but there was a little complication when it came to more training, she was still holding on to the remains of the branch with her tail. Maybe he could pull it out of her grip now that the whiptail realized it wasn't food?
It didn't work, and the attempt to remove the branch just led to her going back for another strong bite. Nerius took advantage of this, and before the jaws hit, called out the command "Crunch!" He let the whiptail have the thing as well, dropping the remains of the branch, and stepping back to get out of biting distance.
At least there were plenty more branches around, though a training dummy likely would have held up a lot better to this sort of thing. Something to invest in, at some point. But for now branches worked, and the whiptail shattered the rest of this one as her more powerful bite hit. "Good murder vine!" Nerius gave her two treats again, it would be better to return to a single one at some point, but he didn't want to reward this powerful bite less than he had the last.
Nerius selected another branch, continuing with the training. He held the branch out, and gave the command "Crunch!" Jumanji bit it, as she was supposed to, but it still wasn't a very powerful bite. This was rewarded with praise, but only a single treat. It was close, but not quite what he wanted, thought the whiptail seemed to expect another treat, sniffing around for the non-existent second one, and looking irritated when she couldn't find it.
Nerius held out the branch again, and repeated "Crunch!" The whiptail, irritated at the reduced amount of food, crunched into the branch with extra force. "Good murder vine!" There were two treats this time, which the vinesnatcher devoured.
The branch was badly fractured, unusually so after only one bite, but that was a good sign, and it would work for another go. He held it out in front of the vinesnatcher, and gave the command "Crunch!" Which Jumanji did, biting into the branch with enough power break it entirely. Nerius praised the whiptail, and gave her another two treats. More food apparently meant more cooperation, though if he gave too many she might not be hungry enough to keep being interested.
He picked up yet another branch, holding it out and calling "Crunch!" As before, the whiptail crunched into the branch, not completely breaking it, but leaving it splintered enough that it could no longer be held out straight. "Good murder vine," was the response, and another two treats were given out.
They were going to run out of branches at this point, but it did seem that the whiptail had a pretty good idea what she was supposed to do. Wouldn't hurt to give it an extra go, they weren't the brightest creatures, another branch worth would do. Choosing a particulary sturdy branch, Nerius held it out to the whiptail, and commanded "Crunch!"
The whiptail sunk her teeth into the branch, there was a lot of force, a proper crunch, but the branch was thick enough it didn't completely break. Still it was worth praise and treats.
Now it was time to finish off the branch, Nerius held it in front of the vinesnatcher again, she always moved when grabbing the treats, called out, "Crunch!" Jumanji lunged for the branch, biting with enough power to shatter the already damaged wood. "Good murder vine!" Nerius tossed her another pair of treats, it seemed like she had figured it out.
What else would be useful in a tournament? Nerius would have much preferred to have this planned out a head of time, but it had been a last minute idea, and now he was trying to figure out what else would be a good use of time. Teaching a pet to sense and dodge the first attack was useful, but that was more challenging, and he doubted he'd have enough time. Or, Jumanji had grabbed one of the branches with her tail, maybe he should teach the whiptail to strangle things with her vines.
His thought process was interrupted as the vinesnatcher started hissing and growling at.. something. A plastic bag, he realized, as it drifted in the slight wind, rustling as it went. And for some reason, Jumanji hated it. She very much wanted to tear it apart, but the chain kept her from reaching it. At least, with her teeth or vines, but the whiptail didn't let that stop her, and the vinesnatcher spat a glob of acid at the bag.
Or he could teach her that. Nerius had not been expecting her to be able to do that, from his reading he hadn't seen anything about whiptails being able to spit acid. It was a seasonal thing, maybe, though it didn't make a lot of sense to him for a plant creature to be able to produce acid in fall and not any other season. But it would be useful in a fight, and now he just needed more plastic bags. Nerius didn't feel like leaving the vinesnatcher unattended, or dragging her back to his house, so he commanded his TROD bring over a bunch of plasic bags.
After a short wait, the TROD arrived, and they were able to get started. He wanted his hands even further away from the acid than the teeth, and picked up yet another branch, extra long this time, and carefully speared bag with the end. Holding the bag as far away from his body as possible, he wiggled the branch, rustling the plastic. Jumanji immediately started hissing at the sound, and as she opened her jaws, he called out "Spit."
Which, the whiptail didn't, and just hissed some more. Nerius rustled the bag a bit more vigorously, and repeated "Spit!" This time the whiptail was irritated enough by the sound that she did indeed spit a burst of acid at the bag. It quickly ate through the flimsy plastic, and even into the stick a bit. "Good murder vine." Nerius tossed her a treat, still not wanting to get closer than necessary. He really would have preferred to have some sort of protective gear, but he didn't have anything that would hold up to acid. Maybe it would have been better to use the TROD for this, but he'd already dismissed it. Well, at least he could shield himself with magic, if necessary.
Shaking the remains of the previous bag off the branch, he speared another, and wiggled the branch to rustle the bag. Jumanji didn't like the sound any more than she had before, and hissed at the bag.
Nerius rustled the bag a bit more, and as the whiptail opened her maw, called out "Spit!" This time, she did, though the aim wasn't quite as good, the glob of acid only melting the edge of the bag. But it was the action he wanted, so he praised the whiptail, and tossed a treat. He wouldn't even need to replace the bag this time, which saved him a little work, and the risk of making too much noise while attaching the bag.
So he rustled the existing bag again, and again the whiptail reacted with aggression. "Spit!" he called, anticipating the vinesnatcher's reaction. The creature didn't disappoint, and spat another glob of acid at the bag. It was more accurate than before, and quickly destroyed the bag. "Good murder vine." Nerius tossed the whiptail a treat, which was, as usual, quickly devoured. While she was eating, he took the opportunity to attach a new bag to the branch.
This bag was rustled as the earlier ones were, and as the whiptail opened her jaws, Nerius called out "Spit!" Yet again, Jumanji spat a burst of acid at the bag, why she hated the sound so much, he didn't know, but it made things simple at least. He praised the vinesnatcher again, and tossed a bit of meat.
Would she spit at a bag that wasn't making noise? Probably not, but he could at least try giving the command before rustling the bag. Attaching another bag, he held it out, but kept it quiet, and called "Spit!" The whiptail didn't, which wasn't terribly unexpected, so Nerius rustled the bag a bit, and that got the reaction he wanted: a melting chunk of plastic on a stick. This was probably making a mess, and he'd have to get his TROD to return to clean it up, there was no way he was touching the acidic plastic remains with his bare hands. But for now, he praised the whiptail, and tossed another treat.
Sticking another bag to the branch, he repeated the process of holding it out, and giving the command "Spit!" The whiptail still didn't, so he rustled the bag as before, and that successfully encouraged the vinesnatcher to spit acid at the bag. He tossed a treat as well as, "Good murder vine."
Maybe she'd gotten the idea a little more than before? Nerius attached another bag, and held it out, this time without rustling it. "Spit!" he called out, the whiptail tilted her head, but didn't do as wanted. "Spit!" he repeated, moving the bag a little closer, but without the noise. This time, the vinesnatcher did spit a bit of acid at the bag, though with less enthusiasm than before. "Good murder vine!" he told the creature, and tossed a treat. A little more force would be better, but at least she was actually spitting acid without needing the sound of the rustling bag. Which honestly, he still didn't understand why she hated.
The branch he had was getting rather melty, so Nerius picked up a new one, stabbing a bag onto the end. Holding it out, he gave the command, "Spit!" Though not overly interested, the whiptail did spit a glob of acid at the bag, without the rustling she didn't seem to have an issue with it. Still, she was praised and given a treat.
It had been a similar case with the branch, she'd been much less vicious about attacking it once it wasn't wiggling around like potential food. She'd gotten better range, and more acid, before, now he just needed to encourage that when attacking on command. Which meant it was time to sacrifice another bag, that was one way to get rid of your extra grocery bags. He attached the next victem to the branch, and held it out. "Spit!" The vinesnatcher did as desired, and was rewarded with a treat and praise. It still wasn't as strong as he'd like, maybe he'd try rustling the bag again.
Nerius stabbed another bag onto the branch, and held it out, giving it a little rustle before giving the command, "Spit!" That little rustle was all it took to get a much more aggressive response, and the whiptail spat out much more acid than before. "Good murder vine." He gave her two treats this time, it had worked with biting, hopefully it would work here too.
Another bag was chosen to be sacrificed to the vine gods, and was offered out to the whiptail with the command "Spit!" While the vinesnatcher did spit acid at the bag, it was again a smaller amount. She was praised, but only given a single treat. Jumanji devoured it, of course, but looked as grumpy as she had before when given less food than expected. It was only half of what Nerius wanted, so it was only half as much reward. Preparing to try it again, he attached another bag to the branch.
Again, this bag was given a little rustle, before the command of "Spit!" was given. As before, the rustle was enough to trigger a more enthusiastic response, and the whiptail destroyed the bag with a large glob of acid. "Good murder vine." She was given two treats again this time, it would lead to a less hungry vinesnatcher, but Nerius didn't have anything else planned for her for the day.
Now, would Jumanji attack with more force, even without the rustle? Only one way to find out, another bag was attached and held out, silently, to the whiptail. "Spit!" While her body language wasn't as aggressive without the dreaded rustle, the vinesnatcher still spat out a large burst of acid, enough to destroy the bag. "Good murder vine!" She was thrown two treats again, because that was exactly what Nerius wanted. As usual, they were devoured in seconds, one would hardly think the whiptail had been getting treats all day.
She seemed to mostly understand what the command meant, but they'd do a few more goes, just to be sure. Nerius attached another bag, and commanded his TROD to return to the training spot. There was a large mess of bag remains, and he really didn't want to clean it up himself, but didn't want to just leave it there either.
With that done, he held out the branch to the vinesnatcher, and gave the command, "Spit!" The whiptail complied, and spat out a good bit at the bag, destroying it. Nerius tossed her a pair of treats, "Good murder vine." Had that been an odd selection of a praise word? Probably, but it fit.
Another bag was stuck to the end of the branch, he was getting low, but that was fine, they were (hopefully) almost finished. Holding out the branch, he repeated the command "Spit!". The whiptail did, still using the amount of force that he had been wanting.
Silver: I'm so glad! I really want people to feel like they can 'do stuff' with their sentient pets, and Draconics especially! I'm excited to see what you guys come up with. :3
Jan 17, 2021 17:59:39 GMT -6
Morgan: I like the update overall.
Jan 17, 2021 17:51:56 GMT -6
Morgan: I'm legit so happy now that draconics will basically be able to communicate in draconic instead of being completely unable to communicate from birth unless classically trained or 7+ intelligence. It was so weird to try to do story breedings like that.
Jan 17, 2021 17:51:21 GMT -6
Riku: I hope things work smoothly for you, Jack. <3 // The new update looks awesome.
Jan 17, 2021 10:58:47 GMT -6
Jack: Thanks for sticking with us!
Jan 16, 2021 20:33:33 GMT -6
Jack: So for those of you not on the Discord, I would like to say I'm still around, just not as much. Had to quit my job to watch the kids, opened an Etsy shop, and I'm trying to just keep things rolling through my current bad depression.
Jan 16, 2021 20:33:29 GMT -6
Riku: I am doing well. I also hope everyone else is doing well! <3
Jan 10, 2021 13:32:14 GMT -6
Morgan: I hope everyone is doing well. c:
Jan 9, 2021 15:20:41 GMT -6