A few more calls, and a wiggle when it seemed reluctant to attack the ball, and the beast was attacking each time she called out for it to do so. The only thing she worried was that the beast might have mistaken the command to be a warning, and so she tossed the stick down to roll to a stop a few feet away. The crossbreed seemed to sag as she did so, its eyes widening and a single click in the direction of the stick all it did before ignoring it completely to look at Haix.
She jabbed a finger at the stick, the beast staring at her hand for a moment as she commanded it to sting the stick again. The crossbreed stared at the finger, then looked back at the stick, Haix repeating the order for emphasis as the beast did not move. The command was hissed one more time, and now the crossbreed slowly stalked its way to the stick as if it expected the rod to suddenly rear up and jab at it on its own. 5 ((Stalker-18.0))
Without any flourish, as her temper began to rise, the crossbreed ducked its head down and nipped at the ball. It was a bit rougher than the other stings had been, the ball sticking to the beast’s small fangs for a heartbeat before settling back down into the mud. It was given a whole sardine for that, and it crunched its way through the tiny fish with a look of contentment. Then, the moment it finished, she ordered it to attack again.
It took three more repeats before it would attack the moment the command was given. And when a grubble, thin from months of winter, emerged nearby, it took a few yells before the beast realized the command did not mean to sting the rubber ball only. Watching the grubble stagger away from the crossbreed, then collapse before it could find its tunnel, she felt confident that the poison would have a decent effect on the creatures of the mines that could feel poison burn through them. 6
She was also fairly confident that Stalker knew the command and would obey now. To ensure it would do so beneath the earth, she directed it to sting different things. The hated ball it struck without a moments doubt, the same for the grubble when it was not trying to eat the tiny corpse. The knotted cloth that was the failed blindfold soon joined the rotation of possible targets, as well as a sardine she added once she thought the crossbreed would be stuck dry-stinging things.
The click-click of the earlier command as well as random words and phrases were thrown in to ensure it would attack on the correct command rather than any noise and pointing. Finally satisfied, she picked up the grubble and the sardine, the crossbreed watching her, or rather watching the treats, with wide eyes. The next trick would make good use of the two larger treats, and she doubted it needed any more rewards for something it already knew. 7(Poison Sting End?)
With another command completed, a quick glance at the grove of trees and their meager shadows was enough to decide which thing to train the crossbreed next. The only issue with the next command was that the wings failed to give much away in terms of how they worked. The structures on the wings were shaped like feathers, but they lacked any central quills or the firm hairs that would normally comprise the bulk of them. Each ‘feather’ was more like an insect’s wing, each formed of a single piece of partially see-through material. The wings overall reminded her of a split between an izer’s and a karzik both in relative size as well as their makeup, and there was no way just by looking at them that she guarantee what training method would work better for it. There would be only one way to find out what manner of flight it was capable of, and so she caught the crossbreed’s attention with a word and a wave of the stiff grubble. 1(Fly start)
It took some time to look down at the discarded stick and up then at Haix’s hands, the later empty of anything other than the dead meat. There was no leap forward as it was called, but it did slink over to her and the meal she held, careful this time to remain a few steps out of reach. It waited there until Haix had pulled out a piece of sardine to nibble on, taking a few steps closer with its wings open and body held in a crouch so that it might flee when she tried to grab it.
She made no such move however, the grubble held just out of its own reach as it took a step closer. It snatched at the treat with its paw, only for Haix to pull the treat up and out of its reach with a new sound coming from her mouth. The crossbreed reacted to the sudden movement with a leap backwards, eyeing the lizard and the treat. 2
There was no following lunge, nothing thrown at it and no tightening of an unseen rope around its neck. The grubble was lowered close to the ground once more as the lizard stared at the crossbreed’s wings, trying to entice it to approach with soft words and the wiggling of the treat. After a minute, Stalker approached to snatch at the grubble, and once more the grubble was jerked away an instant before it leapt back.
The third time the grubble was lowered, it did not wait nearly so long or as patiently as the times before. It moved back into reach of the lizard and, with agonizing slowness, it reached for the grubble with outstretched ‘fingers’. The grubble was pulled upward with the same slowness, the gap between paw and treat never shrinking nor growing. Soon, the crossbreed found its arm could stretch no more, its clawed tips shaking as it strained. 3 ((Stalker-19.0 Haix-173.4))
The wings on its back quivered as they fully spread outwards, the tail twitching behind it as if tasting the air, and then the wings came down with a whumph! The single bent front leg its weight had been resting upon while it reached straightened at the same time the wings went down, the force kicking up its front end so that it stood like a beastkin. The change in elevation brought with it a slight change in position, and its grasping paws still could not reach the treat though they were level with it. The wings flapped again, thick tail outstretched behind it as it staggered forward a step on two legs. The grubble was raised higher, much to its dismay, but the fish head it caught a moment later lessened the sting. It let itself fall back into its comfortable quadrupedal position as it crunched the head. At least it was something. 4
Haix too felt very much the same way about the progress the crossbreed had shown. It was not flight, and she could not be sure that the crossbreed would even be able to take off without a running start as Styx had needed, but it had fluttered its wings to gain a little more height. The wings had shown that, despite her earlier misgivings about their strength, they could survive a few flaps in the air, and they could actually catch air, the membranous feathers sealing together with a flap instead of splitting apart to let the air run through them.
The two of them repeated the trick several times, Haix calling out the commands and rewarding the beast when it flapped its wings to rear up and grab at the treat. The creature had failed to gain any air though it began flapping harder each time, as if to launch itself up onto its hind legs fast enough that Haix would not pull the grubble away in time. 5
With the beast rearing up and flapping, Haix started backing up herself, waving the grubble ever just above its reach. It took a few tottering steps on its hindlegs after her, then dropped down to scurry closer and repeat the earlier rearing up and wing flapping that had earned it treats. Haix did not stop moving long enough for it to do so, always several steps away before the puzzled crossbreed could free its front paws from the ground long enough to snatch at the treat. When the crossbreed simply scurried on all fours to follow her, she would stop, calling out the command it had taken to mean to rear up, waving the grubble just out of reach. When it reared up, she stepped back so it had no chance of keeping up with her.
Confused, but willing to play whatever game this was until it got the grubble, the crossbreed chased her across the plot, receiving encouragement when it flapped and reared up, but no more treats. 6
It began to grow more daring, leaping up with fluttering wings so that all four paws briefly had nothing beneath them but air, and those times it was given more bits of meat and praise. It would slap the ground with its front paws at the wings themselves slammed down a gust of air, hind legs kicking at the ground a moment later in an attempt to get just high enough to reach the treat. The wings beat faster, getting more flaps in before it would land on the ground, that landing delayed at first by half a second, then a full one, then several seconds as it nearly reached the grubble held above the lizards head at the apex of its leap.
Then it did not land at all, the shouted command coming again as its hind legs kicked off one final time. It soared over Haix, for the first time missing the grubble by being too far above it rather than below. It fluttered and glided a few more feet, then tilted to one side as it attempted to turn. 7
The crossbreed fell, hitting the ground hard as it instinctively tucked in its wings to keep them safe from being torn or broken. It tripped as its flailing feet touched the ground, sliding to a stop with its underside coated in mud. Haix did not immediately rush over to it, instead tearing off one of the grubble’s limbs with her teeth and tossing the bloody leg in front of the crossbreed. Neither of them moved, Haix waiting to see if the crossbreed would take its treat and prove to not be seriously damaged, and the crossbreed breathing heavily as it lay there with closed eyes.
Stalker moved first. The eyelids drifted open, then blinked a few times as the bloody limb came into focus. It lunged at the treat, the leg vanishing in less time than it had taken to fall out of the air. She let it lay there for a few more seconds before calling out for it to come back to her. The crossbreed slowly stood, opening one wing to its fullest extent and then the other, giving them a small flap before folding them once more and turning back to Haix. 8(Land start) ((Stalker-20.0))
The game began anew, with Haix calling out for the crossbreed to fly when it leapt and letting it steal away a piece of meat when it did so. The grubble had been fairly easy to pull apart with her claws and teeth, so one leap might earn the crossbreed a part of a leg, another some tiny quivering organ that still steamed in the cold air. Another word was thrown in once the crossbreed had snagged its reward, the command to land given through words as its instincts called for the same thing before it ate its treat. None of the landings were as rough as the first had been though they were still full of slips and stumbles, and soon she felt it would not accidentally break its own wings.
The new flight saw the crossbreed not snag a treat, Haix nimbly stepping to one side to foil its grasping claws. Its attempt at turning and subsequent failed landing made even her wince. 9
It took several tries before the crossbreed successfully followed her movements on the ground, wings beating like a karzik’s as it adjusted itself mid-air to reach for the treats. After that, she allowed it to snag the last few pieces of the grubble only if it could follow her well enough as she ran around the ground, sometimes crouching down to make it dive and other times jumping up to force it to swerve out of the way. With the grubble disposed of, the last leg tossed to it after a successful landing, she called out for it to fly, which it did.
Upon realizing there was no treat in the zig-zagging lizard’s claws however, it tried to land. Haix yelled at it to fly as it glide closer to the ground, and its wings flapped to push it back into the air. Every time it tried to land without her command, she ordered it to continue flying, repeating the fly command with a snarl. When she finally gave the command to land, it hovered and landed gently, seemingly surprised by the return of praise and treats. 10
As they repeated the lesson again and again that the crossbreed had to wait until she gave the command to land, she found herself wondering how it was staying in the air. The wings were not proportionately large enough looking for its main body, and though they tended to beat quickly, it almost seemed to hang in the air at times even when it seemed it should be dropping like a stone. Perhaps the beast had some magic in it, a bit of malii in it maybe. Regardless, it would be good that it would not need too much room to remain in the air, namely because the tunnels of the mines rarely had much space to maneuver.
The crossbreed was starting to waver a bit in the air after all the repeated take offs and the time it took her to give the order to land. A perfect time to guarantee it would obey her even if it was a little tired. 11
She ordered it into the air again, but this time she held the stick once more. Pointing it upwards, the ball held as far from her as she could manage, she called for the crossbreed to sting it. It hesitated, bobbing in the air with a glance at the ground, then at the ball, and flew towards it as slowly as it could manage. The command was repeated, firmer, and it nipped at the ball while trying to keep in the air, the wind from its wings buffeting Haix.
There were more calls for stings, sometimes interspersed with a command for more low echoes,before she was satisfied and called for the crossbreed to land. The beast did so a little too quickly for her liking, but it was nowhere near as rough as the earlier times. She put out a bowl of water for it, and waited for it to drink its fill, and then letting it curl into a ball to sleep. She would wake it when the sun had fallen far enough. 12(Fly/Land End?)
Riku: From what I loosely understand about the fish is that it isn't one-use, whereas the berry is. I feel like there wouldn't be any consequence of 'using' the fish...which I'd think just ooc wouldn't be counted for whatever rolls or whatever it is that it uses
Jun 3, 2020 14:14:30 GMT -6
Twilight-Claw: Thanks for that piece of info Ren! <3 | But would it be allowed for the flavor of the rp if the berry wasn't filling enough for the Lotine?
Jun 1, 2020 6:09:21 GMT -6
Renathan: There is no need to double up on a fish and a magical berry (doesn't change the effect of the berry at all) in a lotine breeding.
Jun 1, 2020 6:02:21 GMT -6
Twilight-Claw: Does anyone know if it is possible to combine both a magical berry and a fish in a Lotine breeding? Or is you can only choose one of them? (right now writing a Lotine breeding)
Jun 1, 2020 5:36:49 GMT -6
Twilight-Claw: I am still interested in trading it for a green drake.
Jun 1, 2020 0:31:33 GMT -6
Ridelys: If you are still interested in a trade twilight, for your fidelity result, let me know.
May 31, 2020 22:49:49 GMT -6
Riku: I got three pet levels and 15c out of it. <3 And all the necessary posts for my job salary form.
May 31, 2020 18:49:26 GMT -6
Riku: In mine my crossbreed used foxfire to burn it - but then it used incendiary illusion, which was extra scary because my cross is a plant pet with thick fur. It used the distraction to escape. I’m proud of it, and it’s okay that I won’t finish this month.
May 31, 2020 18:48:42 GMT -6
Renathan: *But of course, the RNG was not having that. / In Morgan's story, the Nyssa was a real thing, so I wanted to have two different situations for the variety.
May 31, 2020 18:15:27 GMT -6
Renathan: Yeah, the 'finished the story but the RNGods are being a butt' thing is a rather unfortunate situation to be in. I had already decided that in Ren's story, the elderly woman had lied about the nyssa and just wanted someone to talk to*
May 31, 2020 18:14:49 GMT -6
Riku: That makes sense. I've considered that before. -nod- I hope your non-hxr life is going smoothly.
May 31, 2020 16:38:08 GMT -6
Haix: Just quitting the job. Don't believe I'll be making the ten posts required per month any time soon. XD
May 31, 2020 16:34:01 GMT -6
Riku: Note to haix, I believe you can post the new application form at the same time as the quitting form. Unless you are simply taking an overall break from the job system.
May 31, 2020 16:30:58 GMT -6
Fiera Ferella: even AT the gardens yet. XD It sucks when you've finished writing your story and haven't gotten a success, because then its like "well... now what?" XD
May 31, 2020 15:51:47 GMT -6
Fiera Ferella: ive found that when there's a quest that might take longer like this, its a good idea to try and space out the story beats to try and roll a success before i get to the meat of the story. XD Like, by the time i was 5 posts in my character wasn't
May 31, 2020 15:51:21 GMT -6