Phoenix Tears

Discussion in 'THREAD ARCHIVES' started by EquinoxSol, Dec 1, 2013.

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  1. With a flutter, the winged creature alighted on a branch, shaking the tree's leaves a bit. Still, the landing was ungraceful and wobbly. Grasping the branch with his hands, he winced as he irritated an injury. 'That damned hunter,' he thought. The man that had done this to him had been skilled, and knew just where to stab him to truly hurt him.

    Cursing, he tried to hold on to consciousness now that he was safe. The pain was swiftly catching up to him, and he felt himself losing his grip on consciousness. Swallowing hard, he told himself that he couldn't fall asleep, not yet. He was still in hunter territory, who knew if any of them saw him land. There could be tons of them just waiting for him to let his guard down.

    Holding a hand over the deep stab wound in his abdomen, he tried to apply pressure, but the blood just kept pumping from between his fingers. 'Will I die here?' he asked himself, beginning to shake as fear filled him. Trembling, he pressed harder on the wound, trying to staunch the blood flow. 'Ugh, it hurts...' he thought, praying that he would be okay, pulling his wings close and wrapping them around his weakening body.
  2. It was cool and breezy, the hooded figure’s cape swayed slowly in the breeze. He was atop a large tree with one leg dangling over the branch he sat on, his back leaning against the wide tree trunk. A cowl covered the figure’s face but underneath the shadow of the hood, his face was in a grimace as he stared at the tattered photo in his hand. It looked like a photo of three children, smudged in dry blood.

    “Where are you?” he muttered under his breath, before letting a long sigh escape him. He stretched slowly, making sure his body was well balanced on the thick tree branch. He pulled down his hood so that it covered his whole face and relaxed his body. He was feeling a little sleepy, so a little nap won’t hurt...

    “Hmm?” his ears suddenly twitched. He pulled back his hood enough so that his ears were exposed and listened. He heard the sound of fluttering wings in the distance. Were his ears deceiving him? This kind of fluttering could only mean...

    He pulled up his hood to cover his face again and leaped off the tree. Landing quietly on the ground he slowly made his way towards the source of the sound. Laying low and hiding in the bushes, he scanned the area before him, looking at the ground and then up at the trees.

    “Well...well...” he grinned as he saw the phoenix perched on a tree, “This is interesting.”

    He squinted his left eye which was not covered by his long black bangs and slowly reached for his flintlock pistol, which was hidden in a bag strapped to his lower back. This was hunter territory and he was a hunter, any phoenix foolish enough to roost here...well, fame and fortune to the lucky hunter.

    The hunter stood up straight and strode slowly and confidently towards the tree with the perched phoenix, his pistol the whole time aimed at the majestic creature. He was a sharpshooter and he hardly misses his targets.

    “Make any sudden movements and I’ll blow your brains out,” his voice was deep and gruff but his posture was confident and calm.
  3. He was half conscious when he heard footsteps approaching from below. Looking up, he immediately recognized the look of a hunter. His dull red eyes widening, he felt his heart dropping to his stomach, even though he was already halfway dead. Wincing as he irritated a wound in his side, he spread his wings a bit, but even that sent pain lancing into his shoulders. That caused him to wrap his wings protectively around his body as he watched the hunter carefully, his eyes focused on the gun.

    "P-please..." he stuttered out, one hand over his wound, the other holding onto the branch, right next to his bare feet. "Don't kill me..." As more blood escaped his fingers, it dripped past the branch and onto the forest floor below. That, combined with the obvious pain he was in and his blood-soaked shirt, obviously showed the hunter just how hurt he was. Even a child hunter could kill him.

    But this one was most certainly fully grown, and had a gun pointed at him. His muscles all tense, he watched the hunter for signs of him shooting. Maybe, if he was careful and quick, he could somehow avoid the bullet and get himself enough time to fly away. But that would never work. He could barely move, let alone fly. If he tried flying, chances were that he would end up on the ground with more injuries, and the hunter would still get him.

    "Please..." he repeated, his mind becoming woozy and his actions sluggish. How nice it would be to just lie down and go to sleep...Shaking himself out of it, knowing that to go unconscious meant death, he refocused on the hunter, though his vision was now watery and he felt dizzy.

    Before he could say or do anything more, his muscles gave out beneath him, and he fell five yards to the ground in a flutter of green, yellow, orange, and red feathers. Just one could fetch a hunter a substantial amount of money, but an entire phoenix would make them a rich man for life. Even more if it was still alive, though it rarely was. Those who still lived had their wings cut off, and, more often than not, became bedslaves.

    As he struggled to push himself up to his hands and knees, he felt his consciousness wavering, and gave up, too weak to fight back. Soon, he was unconscious, his last thought being, 'I hope I die before I wake." His eyes closed, and he sank away, the blood now pooling around him.
  4. The hunter gazed at the phoenix perched on the tree. He could smell the stench of blood and looking at the condition of the creature confirmed that he was injured. He looked at the weak creature for a moment, his blue left eye studying his prey's every movement. But then he felt something...this was somewhat familiar...

    "Please...don't kill me..." the voice of a child echoed in the hunter's mind. Was this how he looked like back then? When the phoenix fell off the tree and came crashing to the ground, it snapped the hunter back to reality. His gun was still pointing at the now unconscious creature as blood started to pool around him. The hunter let out a sigh and slid back his pistol into its bag. He approached the phoenix, poking it with his shoe and once he was satisfied that there was no movement, proceeded to carry him. Gently he raised the injured creature in his arms, he looked at his face and clicked his tongue.
    "Why am I even doing this?" as if questioning himself he started to walk off deeper into the forest, in search of a safe place to treat the phoenix's wound.

    After a few minutes of walking, and making sure that no one was following him, the hunter found a cave and entered it. He walked as deep as the cave would allow him to and gently set the injured phoenix on the ground. The hunter untied the strings on his hood and took it off. The hood was attached to his cape and when he removed it, two of his hidden backpacks were exposed. The one on his lower back was for his pistol while the one on his upper back seemed like it was for supplies. He unstrapped the bag with his pistol in it and removed the pistol. He then bunched it into a makeshift pillow and placed it carefully under the phoenix's head.

    He then rummaged through his backpack, pulling out a roll of bandages and a pot of healing salve. He slid out his knife which was kept strapped to his left thigh and cut the phoenix's shirt right down the center. The wound seemed deep, and there's been plenty of blood loss. He even wondered if it was worth it to treat this thing. Shaking the thoughts away, he slowly wiped the blood off from the wound with some of the bandages and once he could see the wound clearly, started applying some of the healing salve. He rubbed it gently on the creature's abdomen, not wanting to press to hard as it might hurt the poor thing even more. Once done, he folded a bandage to make a makeshift gauze to cover the wound and then wrapped it up with the remaining bandages. Slowly he wrapped the bandage around the phoenix's abdomen, making sure to lift him carefully as he pulled the bandage underneath him.

    "God, you're a handful." the hunter muttered under his breath but he seemed satisfied at his work. He took his cape and covered the phoenix with it,making sure he would stay warm. We went through his back pack again and pulled out a small vial of blue liquid. It was a small healing potion, the healing salve on the phoenix's wounds would help ease the pain outside, but for the repairs inside well, might as well leave it to this magical blue thing. He sat next to the unconscious phoenix and tilted his head slightly.
    "How do I make him drink this?" he wondered. It was obvious that the phoenix was in no condition to drink anything. He was after all still unconscious.
    "Oh well." With a shrug of his shoulders the hunter opened the vial and downed the contents. He then lifted the phoenix's head up gently and kissed him on the lips, forcefully pouring the liquid into his unconscious patient.
  5. The phoenix awoke several hours later, after the sun had gone down. His dark red eyes opened slowly, and suddenly, seeing a stone ceiling, became scared. Had the hunter brought him here? Feeling fear fill him, he sat up, but the movement sent his head reeling. Lying back down, he looked around, noticing the hunter nearby. Shuffling away from him, he winced as he irritated his wound, and placed a hand over it. Feeling gauze beneath his fingers, he looked down and saw that he was all bandaged up.

    Eyes widening, he looked at the hunter, looking down again and seeing the cloak around him and the makeshift pillow beneath his head. "What....?" he asked, his voice quiet and scratchy. "Why are you doing this?" He looked to the hunter, worried of what his answer might be. He was just a phoenix. Any normal hunter would have him tied up and gagged, and probably drugged, so that he couldn't escape. But this one seemed to be helping him.

    His eyes searched the hunter's for any sign of deceit. After all, he was a man who killed phoenixes for a living. Why should he want him to live? He moved away a bit, fearful of the hunter and his weapons. All the while, his mind struggled to find a viable reason as to why the hunter would help him. "If you're going to do it, just kill me now. I don't want to live to have my wings cut off."
  6. The hunter sat down further away from the unconscious phoenix,taking some cleaning utensils from his backpack and started to clean his pistol. He then unwrapped the chains he had coiled up his arm like accessories. It wasn't really just accessories, the chains can be attached to his flame-shaped chakram which for now he let stay hidden in his backpack. The chains also serve as a protective makeshift gauntlet for his arms, sides he liked how it looked. Fashionable yet functional.

    The hunter was in a zen-like state cleaning his pistol, before long the sun had already set and it was dark outside. It was then he heard the stirring of his unconscious patient. He didn't bother to look at him and when the phoenix winced away and put some distance between them, it was a natural reaction for the creature to do. After all, the mortal enemy of his kind was in close proximity to him.

    “Why I wonder...” As if repeating the phoenix’s question to himself, hoping to find the answer as to why he even bothered to save the thing. He stopped cleaning his pistol and aimed it at the phoenix’s head and stared at him silently. He then shrugged his shoulders and returned his pistol into his bag.

    “Dunno. Just felt like it I suppose,” the hunter replied nonchalantly. He then rummaged through his backpack and pulled out a leather waterskin and a piece of dried bread covered in cloth.
    He walked towards the phoenix, his face solemn as he placed both the waterskin and the dried bread in front of the phoenix, “Here.”

    He then moved away from the creature, giving him some space. He turned his back on the phoenix and laid on his side. When he heard the phoenix speak about killing him, he couldn't help but chuckle lightly.
    “The potion I made you drink was pretty expensive.” He chided, “It’d be a waste of my money if I killed you now.”
    “Sides...” The hunter who's back was still facing the phoenix sneered, “Always wanted an exotic pet.”
  7. He took the bread and water gratefully, but he would have much rather preferred meat. Phoenixes were natural birds of prey, and when they hunted, it was most often deer, as they were large animals and could feed an entire family. Still, he wolfed down the bread and water, starving. As he ate, he listened to the hunter.

    He also kept his eye on the man, not trusting him in the slightest, but when he lied down, turned away from him, he felt slightly safer.

    However, as the man spoke, especially the part about the exotic pet, made his blood run cold. "No!" He shouted. "I'm not a pet!" Getting to his feet, he felt a wave of nausea and pain pass through him from his wound. Bracing himself against the wall of the cave, he tried not to fall down, muttering, "I'm not a pet..."

    Having to sit down, the nausea and dizziness too much or him, he glared at the hunter, even though he was still painfully aware of the pistol he had, as well as countless other weapons hunters had.

    Does he expect me to dance for him and perch on his shoulder and say funny things for his amusement? He thought, his red eyes burning. He would never do anything of the sort. He was a phoenix! He was a noble bird from a dying race of creatures. He would not be anyone's pet.
  8. The hunter turned to face the phoenix when he heard him vehemently protest against being a pet. He got up, dusted himself and walked towards the cowering phoenix. Despite the fact that the creature was cornered, his eyes burned a fiery determination to not become a slave to another being.

    “It’s not like you have a choice...” The hunter spoke in a low tone, walking slowly towards the phoenix in a clam stride and once he was close enough he reached out his right hand and...

    ...patted the phoenix on his head, rustling the creature’s hair as he crouched before him, a small grin on his face.
    “Just kidding.” The hunter chuckled slightly, “Pets are too much of a nuisance. I’m not that responsible of a guy.”
    He then turned to take the waterskin, his cape and bunched up bag and walked to where his backpack was.

    He sat down crossed legged and started to coil the chains he had just cleaned around his arms. Once that was done, he placed the pistol back into the bag and strapped it onto his waist, sliding the bag part to his back, so it was hidden. He then packed up whatever items he had outside of the backpack back into it and strapped it on his back. He shook his cloak for a moment and then with one swing, put it on and fastened it in place.

    He turned to look at the phoenix and walked towards his again. This time he produced another small vial of blue liquid, the same one he gave to the phoenix earlier.
    “Here.” He said as he crouched down and placed the vial on the phoenix’s hands, “Take this and rest for tonight. By tomorrow you’ll be able to fly again. Be sure to fly off somewhere really far. There are other hunters around these parts but probably about two to three days away.”

    The hunter stood up and pulled down his hood. He noticed that the phoenix was still observing him, so he turned to look at him and then at the vial in the creature’s hand.
    “What?” He chided, “You want me to feed it to you through a kiss like last time?”
    He then chuckled at his own remark and started to walk out of the cave.

    “See ya.” He gave a two finger salute to the phoenix and walked off.
    Why he decided to save and let the phoenix go was beyond him but he knew the creature would be able to take care of itself. That blue potion was pretty potent...and expensive. And now he has to get a new batch in the next town, just in case he runs into any other forms of trouble.
  9. He watched the hunter, not liking how he ha been teased. As he left, he looked down at the vial, frowning slightly and wondering if it was poison. Still, it didn't look like any kind of poison he knew of.

    After a moment's hesitation, he took out the cork and put the vial to his lips. Drinking the contents, he winced at the too-sweet taste. Still, he started feeling a bit better. Curling up on the cave floor, he let his wings wrap around his shoulders to fight off the cold.

    When he awoke, dawn had only recently broken. Yawning and stretching, he looked at his shirt, which had been cut by the hunter. Sighing softly, he left the cave, and immediately he smelled breakfast in the form of a strong looking elk which was a few yards from him.

    Stomach growling, he felt his instincts kick in, and flew at the beast. Tackling it to the ground, he wrestled with it for a while before he was able to sink his teeth into its neck, killing it almost instantly.

    He ate most of the elk, leaving bones and the fatty parts he didn't like. Once he had eaten, he sat for a long while, thinking. I need to repay that hunter, he thought, taking to the skies. He was never one to let a debt go unpaid, and from what he gathered, the potions were expensive. Besides, he didn't try to kill him. He needed to repay both his debts: both to the hunter who helped him, and the one that nearly killed him.
  10. The hunter had continued on walking throughout the night towards the nearest town. Ronfaure it was called, a peaceful little town bordering at the edge of hunter territory and the vast lands where all sorts of creatures roam. The night was silent save for the rustling of the leaves in the wind and some crickets and the moon shone brilliantly in the sky above. The hunter kept on walking in a leisurely pace. A soft gust of wind suddenly blew past him, causing his cloak to bellow behind him. He stopped for a moment and looked up at the sky, eye gazing at the moon.


    A voice of a child resonated from within the deep confines of his mind. The hunter closed his eyes and for a moment, he could see a trembling child before him. He was in tattered clothes covered in grime and dirt. Blood was trickling from his head covering his right eye. Brilliantly colored feathers seemed like it was sticking out of the child's back.

    "I'll be good..."

    The child sobbed. A figure stood before the child, covered in a dark robe. It extended its hand to the child...

    "Ugh..." the hunter suddenly felt a throbbing pain in his head. He staggered towards a tree for support, his breathing suddenly ragged and cold beads of sweat started to form on his forehead. He clutched his head and gritted his teeth, as if to tolerate the pain. The pain disappeared as suddenly as it came and in a few moments the hunter was alright again. He shook his head and steadied himself, it was time for him to continue on.

    By the time the hunter had reached the outskirts of Ronfaure, dawn was already breaking and there were some people already walking about.
    He walked into the town silently, not looking at anyone in particular and the people there knew his kind and decided to ignore him. He continued walking until he stood before the town's inn. He walked in and was greeted by a burly bartender from behind the counter.

    "G'mornin'. Wha ken ah git ye?" the bartender asked as he looked at the hunter.
    "Breakfast sounds good." the hunter gave a wry smile as he sat himself at the counter, "What's today's special?"
    "It be yeggs an' toast sadly," the bartender shook his head, looking sad, "We runnin' outta money to run dis place. So food stock ain't gud at de moment."
    "Food's still food." the hunter grinned as he pulled back his hood, "Gimme them 'yeggs' then."
    "Aye, jis a moment." the bartender said as he walked back to the kitchen. A few moments later the smell of freshly cooked eggs wafted throughout the building and the hunter could hear the sizzling of eggs on a frying pan.

    "'Ere ye go." the bartender placed the breakfast plate before the hunter, "Enjoy."
    The hunter nodded quietly and started to eat his breakfast. His face in deep consternation as he assessed the situation of the town. It was said that there was a time when phoenixes would come to the town to trade with the townsfolk, helping with its economy and development. But then...the hunting began and now the town was struggling to survive. They could trade with the normal merchants and other hunters who pass by but the people of Ronfaure were forsaken. Just because they wanted to uphold to being neutral grounds. They didn't like conflict and they were vehemently against the hunting of phoenixes, especially since in the past it was their kind that helped the town flourish.

    The hunter finished eating his breakfast and drank the glass of water left by the bartender.
    "How much?" he asked as he rustled through his pockets to get money.
    "5 bronze pieces, if ya please." the bartender replied.
    "Here." the hunter produced a folded piece of paper and handed it to the bartender, "You folks need it more than I do."
    The bartender looked at the folded piece of paper and opened it. His eyes went wide when he saw what was between it. It was a phoenix feather. Not the usual kind either, it was of high quality. If he were to sell this the money would be enough to revamp the business and perhaps even help the town for a while. The bartender looked at the hunter, dumbfounded.
    "Y-ya sure? Tis a fortune yer givin' me." the bartender sounded like he was about to choke on his words.
    "Like I said." The hunter grinned as he pulled his hood to cover his head, "You need it more than I do."
    With that the hunter walked off, giving the bartender a two finger salute as he left the inn. The bartender held the phoenix feather to his chest and started to sob softly.

    Outside the hunter looked up at the sky and stretched his arms, "Right...where to next?"
  11. He had followed the hunter to a village, and had hidden in a tree on its outskirts, waiting for him to emerge. Forcing himself to be patient, he waited silently, until finally the hunter went outside the small inn that was in the town.

    He wanted to wait until the man was far enough away from the village so that he couldn't get attacked by anyone, but his patience was waning. After a second, he flew to another tree, farther away, making sure the hunter caught a glimpse of a red feather. Maybe he would know of the hunter that had hurt him.

    Even then, he could barely remember his features. The man was young, in his twenties maybe, and lean. He had pale blonde--almost white--hair and a slender jaw. Aside from that, be could remember nothing more. Regardless, he felt like if he didn't get revenge, he would go crazy.

    He needed this.
  12. The hunter continued walking around the quiet town. Stopping by several roadside stalls that were selling little trinkets and other odds and ends. He was taking his sweet time walking in the direction of the town's outskirts, aware that he was being followed.
    "Now why would he follow me?" the hunter muttered under his breath. He had caught a glimpse of the injured phoenix's red feather earlier on but paid it no mind. That was until he realized that the creature was following him closely, although not close enough to be caught by him or the people of the town, but close enough to keep track of where the hunter was going.
    "Just one more stop." the hunter chuckled to himself as he walked into an alchemy store. In the store he replenished his stock of healing salve and the expensive blue potion known as Undine's Tears. Once he was sure that he didn't need to do any more restocking, he went out of the store and made his way to the town's border exit and walked into the vast lands.

    He kept walking for a while, humming a little tune to himself. He then stopped by a large tree and climbed it. He climbed all the way to the top and took in the scenery around him. While he was looking he could hear the sound of flapping wings. He didn't move nor try to turn in the direction of the sound. Instead he just spoke out, "Stalking is unbecoming of a creature as grand as yourself."
  13. "I wasn't stalking," he said, pouting a bit. "I just won't let a debt go unpaid...and I need your help to find the hunter that hurt me. If...if you help me, I'll do whatever you want for a week. I think that will be fair... But I just can't stand the thought that the hunter that hurt me is still around. Please."

    He wrung his hands, shifting on the tree next to the one the hunter was in. "I...I just want to pay you back for the potions you gave to me and to hurt the hunter that hurt me. After I repay my debts, I'll leave you alone." He fixed his red eyes on him, his muscles tense, just in case the hunter tried to attack.

    "Wouldn't you want to get revenge on a phoenix if they attacked you without reason?" he finished, standing up so he could get ready to fly away, deciding that he would find the damn hunter on his own if the man in front of him wouldn't help.
  14. "You don't like debts to go unpaid, eh?" the hunter mused and scratched his chin.
    He sounds like me... the hunter thought as he stared back into the determined red eyes of the phoenix.
    "Oh?" the hunter raised an eyebrow in interest at the phoenix's offer, "You'll do anything I want for a whole week? Now that sounds tempting..."
    He then gave a low chuckle and said, "Yeah, I guess I would want to seek revenge on the phoenix that would hurt me for no reason but then again, me being a hunter is reason enough for phoenixes to hate and attack me."
    He tilted his head and pointed at the phoenix, "You included. So why do you need my help? Just because you want to repay a debt?"
    The hunter shrugged his shoulders and started to climb down from the tree and leaped off it once he was low enough.
    He dusted himself and turned to look up at the phoenix.
    "So." he started, a small grin playing on his lips, "What does this 'hunter that hurt you' looked like?"
  15. "He was skinny," he called down, watching the hunter carefully. "His hair was almost white, but it had a bit of yellow in it. And he had a slender face, like a nymph." The phoenix was silent for a moment, but then said, "And I want your help because you probably know the hunters nearby. I can't ask anyone else..."

    He folded his arms across his chest, frowning softly. "And this doesn't mean we're friends. But without you I probably won't be able to get revenge. We're not friends, hunter." He spat out the last word, baring his slightly pointed teeth.

    "So do you know of any hunters like that? Or have I made this deal for nothing?" He sat down on the branch, looking down at the hunter. He still didn't get a new shirt, and was simply sitting there with a sour expression on his face, but his eyes held a determination and anger unlike most phoenixes. He had been injured by hunters before, but for some reason this time he had snapped, and now wanted nothing more than to hurt him back. His fits clenched in anger, the phoenix disliking being made fun of.
  16. "Skinny, slender faced, near-white hair..." the hunter scratched his chin as he scanned his memory for anyone fitting the description.
    "I think I know a few hunters that are similar to that description." The hunter called back to the phoenix, "But I could be wrong."
    The hunter couldn't help but chuckle at the phoenix's reaction.
    "Yes, yes. We're not friends." the hunter nodded, "Let's just be business associates shall we?"
    The hunter started to walk off but before he got far he stopped and looked back at the phoenix.
    "Well?" he asked raising his hands in question, "Are you coming or what? I know that there's a couple of hunters out in the vast lands at the moment, searching for prey. Maybe one of them is 'your' hunter?"
    With that he walked off, his eyes gazing at the deep forests in the distance.
    Hmm...Melwark and Jase were last seen heading towards the deep forests in the vast lands. the hunter thought as he continued on walking. Maybe it's Melwark? But then again he isn't skinny but he does have near white hair. Old age maybe. As for Jase...he's got a slender face and I think his hair is near white or was it just a sandy blonde?
    The hunter then stopped in his tracks, a thought just came up to him. It wouldn't be a good idea for him to be seen with the phoenix. Well it's not like he cared but the phoenix would be in some form of danger if the other hunters saw him.
    He turned to face the phoenix and asked, "Is there a way for you to disguise yourself? I don't think it's safe for you to walk around as a phoenix since we are looking for hunters."
  17. "If I had a shirt," he stated, "I could try to hide my wigs beneath it. But my hair is a dead giveaway. Any halfway experienced hunter would know that I'm a phoenix." He ran a hand through his hair, hopping off of the branch and spreading his wings so he would soften his landing. Still, it wasn't the most graceful landing ever.

    When he had become old enough, his uncle taught him to fly. Unlike most phoenixes, though, he wasn't a natural, and constantly fell or wobbled as he flew. Before he could finish being taught, his uncle had been killed by a hunter, leaving him to learn the rest himself. Of course, his method wasn't perfect, and no amount of practice made him any better, but still he tried. And he was a hell of a lot better than any hunter!

    "What's your name?" he asked after a second, following behind him. "If I need to disguise myself and talk to people, shouldn't we know each other's names?"
  18. "Hmm true..." The hunter crossed his eyes and sized up the phoenix. Fiery red hair like that is easy to spot from miles away.
    "Can't be helped then." He sighed as he took off his cloak and offered it to the phoenix.
    "Sorry if it stinks a little, hadn't the time to wash it really." The hunter smirked.
    Without the cloak covering most of the hunter's features, one can see that he was well built. His hair was a messy layered cut that fell to his shoulders and his bangs were uneven. He had longer messy bangs covering his right face, while the left face was barely covered with any strands of hair. His hair was also jet black, it shine slightly in the sun, but if he were to roam around at night, his his dark hair and dark attire, he would be difficult to spot.

    "Oh?" The hunter teased as he listened to the phoenix ask for his name, "Trying to be 'friendly' now are we?" For a split second, the hunter's face softened into a sad expression but he shook it off and turned his back on the phoenix.
    "Clyde." He muttered, "At least I think that's my name."
  19. Putting the cloak on, he wrinkled his nose at the smell a bit, which smelled distinctly of humans and blood. Still, it would be better than dying. Pulling up the hood, he frowned a bit as the hunter spoke again, teasing at his desire to know his name. Once he had spoken it, though, the phoenix became interested, having seen the sadness passing over his face. How could a human not know his name? All the hunters he had encountered seemed to be proud of the names their parents had given them.

    After a minute of silence, he said, "My uncle called me Failen. It means 'brave' in the Old Tongue." Delving into silence once more, he slowly built up the courage to ask, "Why aren't you sure what your name is?" Once he had asked it, he stopped walking and faced the hunter, confusion in his eyes. Never had he met a human who didn't know his name. He was an anomaly in Failen's world, and the phoenix was undoubtedly interested.
  20. "Why I wonder..." Clyde sighed as he continued walking. When he heard the phoenix stop in his tracks he paused for a moment and then turned to face him.
    "This name..." He started slowly, he smiled a pitiful smile but shook his head and let out a little chuckle, "Doesn't matter really."
    He turned on his heels and started walking again, not stopping to see if the phoenix was following.
    "Failen, eh?" The hunter mused, "Interesting name. I suppose you are brave. Either that or totally foolish. You are following a hunter, me, around."

    Clyde then stopped in his tracks and stood in a defensive stance. His ears twitching as his eyes darted around their surroundings. Immediately he crouched down and slid off his backpack, taking two flame-shaped chakrams and attaching them to the side clips on his belt. He then stood up and wore the backpack. He turned to look at Failen and gestured him to come closer.
    "Stay close." His voice was a low command, "I feel as if something is watching us."
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