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It all started when a white-haired warrior stopped a prince from killing a white stag. Since then its all been pure chaos and second-guessing and they wouldn't have it any other way.
* Against the cloudy sky, a brown-feathered hawk glides on the winds coming from the east. It screeches, crying its war's song. Causing a light jacketed rider to turn his head and looked up, a hand reached up to block the sun from hitting his strange eyes. Snow white hair flowed gently in the wind along with the ends of a long red and gold knitted scarf. The dark bay horse nickered and pulled on the reins, making his rider chuckled and patted against his neck. With a word whispered in his ear, the horse took off in a playful run on the light green grassy valley. The rider laughed and encouraged with `yea's and kicks against the beast's sides. They thundered on, making animals that were enjoying a cool breeze with their afternoon meal to run wild away from the horse to avoid being trembled upon.
The rider reached to pull out the darts that have loosely bound his long curling hair from his face to let it twirl free in the rushing wind. With a carefree on his young freckled face, the rider closed his eyes, letting the feel of flying in the wind like the brown hawk rushed throughout his blood and body. Upon the cliffs to the right of him, stood a cloaked figure that watched man and horse enjoying an afternoon run. A grin formed on his tanned face as he commits the sight to memory before disappearing from view. With a silent promise to find the young man in a near by future.
The horse was slowly allowed to trot, panting from the run as they enter a forest. The rider draped against the animal's neck, snow white mixing in with dark brown as the man muttered nonsense cooing. He rubbed his callous fingers against the taut muscle and skin. They were brothers. Each proven time after to bleed and fight for the other, dive to pull the other out danger. They wore identical beads and feathers in their hair. Also they wore a leather and ribbon headband around their head with the braided ends lying against the side of their faces. The horse trotted to the sounds of a flowing river, stopping on the edge and bowing his head down to drink at the cool water. His human brother slipped off his back and couched down beside him, scooping water up with his tattooed hand being used as a cup.
Then he stood up to remove the dark red saddle and grey saddle pad to drop onto the ground, then next came the draft tract and reins. He took out the brush and brushed down his brother before letting the horse go bath in the cool water. He smiled before he slipped out his shirts, belts and boots, folding the shirts and sticking them under the boots and the belts over the saddle horn. He un-strapped daggers and throwing knives from various places on his body to lay on his shirts. Leaving on his black with ice blue leather laces up the sides breeches and leather arm band and single fingerless leather glove, the rider waded into the water till it came up to his lean waist.
He scooped up the water and splashed it onto his pale body. He had the lean body of a warrior, scars on various places on the skin from practice and from battles. Symbols and pattern rings covered his left bicep and right forearm and wrist and hand and along the spine of his back and on his freckled cheeks. Large silver hoops with colorful rings hanged from his ears with a large bronze piercing through the conch of his right ear. Necklaces, either leather cord or silver and gold draped from his neck, filled with charms, beads and pendants. Shell bangles clinked together on his right wrist and two fingers on each hand were laced with rings.
The sound of wings flapping in the air caused him to look around, and sniffed the air with his sharpen nose. Smelling nothing that screamed `Threat' to his nose, he dropped to his knees and ducked his head back to dip into the water. Fingers danced in the water as toes dug into the muddy ground of the water. His brother splashed around before trotting back onto dry grass to rest in the open sun to dry off and keep guard as the human continue his relaxing bath.
Fish nipped at the slender body and hair floating in their water, causing the owner to chuckle softly, feeling younger then his twenty-three years. He was forced to grow up quickly when his childhood ended at ten years old when raiders burned down his village and slaughter his parents and uncles and aunts and stole his brothers and sister and cousins and friends to be sold into slavery. He was spared only cause his mother hidden him away under the hogs' troth at the end of her life and strength.
Then as a young boy, he lived wild in the forests and traveling roads, stealing from travelers and eventually taken in by a traveling circus. There he learned how to be nimble and swift, jump high and do awe-inspiring flips in the air. Then he was taught to sing and dance with great joy for life. He learned how to apply his newly learnt skills to fighting later when he was forced to leave his circus friends. But in between that eventful day to now, swimming in the cool river, he re-gained a family. A wild stallion that was wary of men but allowed a wild youth pet his head and neck and climbed onto his back to forever ride together to where the wind took them.
They belonged to no kingdom, served no master but themselves. He offered his skills and weapons when there was money to be made and they offered the strength of their arms and legs and back to those that need it. They were a force of stubborn wills and sharp wit, who would back out of a war if they see nothing in it for them or they don't like their employer. And would do what it takes to make a gaggle of children giggled and clap their hands in joy.
A sound of water splashing made the young wonderer to stand up in the river, water glistering in the light on the pale taut body. He pushed back wet hair that was plastered to his face and blinked at the stunning sight of a large white stag that was swimming across the muddy water. A shinning light from inside the brush on the other side of the water, caused the strange cattish eyes to widen in alertness as he raced and splashed around in the water to get the majestic animal to swim away faster. He even screamed and jumped onto a large bolder and leaped from rock to rock. An arrow still pierced through the air but the young warrior was able land with a splash in the water, causing the grand beast to run through the water now. But the arrow still pierced fleshed, through the covered hand of the white stag's rescuer. A curse from the brushes and his own cry of pain rang as one throughout the air. The white stag disappeared into the dark forest, to be never seen again but not forgotten. Cursing rang in the ears of the warrior as arms pulled him out of the water.
“Dammit, you idiot! I get it that you want to save the stag's life but you do not get into the line of fire!” A blond man with sun kiss skin and dressed in brown and green suede and leather clothes scolded the other as he pulled the hand towards himself.
The young warrior winced and spit back “Oy! I'm the idiot!?” A look from the hunter told him that it was an agreed idea. “Don't you know that it's bad luck to kill a white stag?! It's bad for the forest and for the fool that killed it!”
The hunter rolled his stunning blue eyes and broke the arrowhead end off the shaft and told the paler man to grit his teeth before pulling out the rest through the bleeding hand. He then pulled off the ruined glove and tore a strip from his white undershirt to use it to wrap around the wound. “Get your gear and horse, we got a physician back at camp that can do a better tending then I can.”
“Why should I go with a fool like you?” The snow-haired man snorted as he pushed up to his feet with one hand and stomped toward where he put his gear. His horse was looking on, watching as a spectator to between his brother and this newcomer. He wasn't about to jump in anytime soon, leaving his warm spot in the sun.
“Cause a wound like that might get infected and judging from the weapons you got here and the whole `I'm a wanderer' look you got going on here, you need that hand to earn money.” The hunter followed, waving his hand at the couching man as he took in the man's look. “I only care cause I was told good deeds allow you to live longer then bad ones.” He quickly spoke when cattish yellow eyes looked at him with a thin eyebrow raised.
With a dry laugh, the slightly shorter of the two men pulled on his leather vest-shirt then pulled on his cream-purple thin cloth jacket, careful of his bandaged hand. “Coming from you, the one that was about to doom a forest and himself!” He pulled out long black steel darts with red tassels and twirled his long wet hair up, bounding it up loosely.
“Look, you're getting that hand fixed even if I got to pinned you down by force to do it.” The blond man sighed and gave the other body one more judging look. “And it looks like I won't have a problem doing it either.”
At that, the wanderer laughed long and loud. “Ha!” He poked at the other's nose, ignoring the fact on how he had to reach and tip his head back to do it for sake of pride. “You can't hold down a newborn lamb let alone me.” Then he buckled his belts with clumsy hands around his narrow waist, bunching up his cloth jacket inside and out of them. Then he looked back up to get his own look-see of the hunter. “You look like a noble's boy. Well-fed and never had to work hard.” He chuckled out a loud “Too well-fed at that!”
The taller man bristled like an angry cat and hissed out “At least I don't got a girl's body.” He folded his arms against his broad chest and turned out his nose like a snob. “'m not fat.” He muttered to himself.
With a mmph, the warrior whistled for his brother to come to him so he placed the riding gear back on him. He winced at the strain of the wound in his hand. Longer and broader hands pushed his bony ones away to take over the placement of the saddle. He got laughed at when the horse tried to bit his fingers when it came to put in the bit.
“Soar has always had good judgment about people.” The warrior finished up with the bit and looped the reins back over the saddle. “And I trust him to point out the bad.” He adjusted supply packs and weapons' straps on where they belonged.
“Whatever.” The hunter waved a dismissal hand at the comment, and grabbed the arm of the warrior and start dragging him over to the log-bridge that connected the sides of the river. “Let's get that hand fixed.”
Clearly, he was just as stubborn as the shorter man. Not to be out done, the warrior dug the heels of his boots into the ground and pulled back on his arm. Soar just watched as he followed, laughing at it silently. With a growl the hunter, picked up the other and throw him over his shoulder and with him, yelling and kicking his legs in the air and beating his back with his fist, he walked on.
After a while, the warrior gave up and pouted, he would never admit to it though but his brother would say he did, and allowed himself to be carried to the hunting party of his newly made friend as they set up camp for the night in a clearing a few feet from a bubbling brook. Both men ignored the confused and questioning shouts as the hunter walked into the tent that was sent up for the physician, really more like his student that agree to go on the hunting trip while his master tended to a nearby village that has been plagued with a flu for the past week. Soar waited calmly outside, nibbling on some greenery.
With grunt, the blond man dropped the insufferable snowy-haired man onto the ground. The dark tawny haired healer that had turned away from assembling a small worktable to watch the king's son fling a strange young man to the ground and raised his eyebrows as if asking what is this? The blond lord just grabbed the pouting man's wrist and held up the bloody palm up at him.
“He got in between this great big white stag; I mean he was big and silvery white, not albino, and my arrow.” The healer had already un-wrapped the make-shift bandage to check over the wound, seeing that the bleeding was slowing down.
“Once again, its bad luck to kill the white stag.” The snowy-haired man hissed out as the healer cleaned the wound and checked for splinters before rubbing some ointment on both sides of the wound and wrapping a white bandage around it and tied it securely.
“Well its still a stupid thing to jump in front of an arrow.” The hunter leaned against the work table, muscular arms folder against the brown leather covered chest. “By the way, what's a boy like you doing out in the woods alone, armed to the teeth?” He tilted his head at the cat-eyed man. The `boy' snorted and looked up, falling back onto his elbows that kept him from out right laying on the bedroll.
The healer put away the un-used bandages and bottles of ointment. “You drank the milk of the Mist Dragons from the snow-capped mountains in the north, the ones that led into the Ice lands, didn't you?” His onyx eyes looked over at the man who was studying him back,
“Yes, I did. I was bitten by this demon snake while I was near the mountains.” The warrior turned away and crossed his legs as he folded his arms behind his head. “I wondered into the cave of such a dragon and she made me promise her a favor before letting me drink her milk.” The yellow eyes looked back up at the healer and the hunter.
“What does that have to do with you being on your own in the woods?” The blond man was getting annoyed from not having his question answered.
“I see the side-effects from drinking the milk weren't just rumors.” The healer pointed at the white hair and cat eyes of the warrior. “Tell me, you aren't really like forty or sixty cause I know that side-effect is false.”
The warrior blinked owlishly before throwing his head back into a roaring laugh, showing off two sets of elongated canine teeth from the top row of his teeth. “No man, I'm not that old. I'm like twenty-three. But the milk does make you age slower.” He wiped the tears from his eyes. “It is really beside the point, since my hair is already white.” .
The healer nodded and then lowered to offer his hand to the warrior that was lying on his bedroll with a friendly smile. “I'm Lucan.” The warrior blinked at the hand like it was a foreign object that he had never seen the likes of before.
“Roark.” He offered the un-injured hand back, letting the two hands clasped in friendship and greeting. “Who's the fat idiot?” He leaned in with chuckle, nodding his head off to the fuming blond who really was getting fed being ignored.
“I'M THE KING OF CLAVORN'S SECOND SON, PRINCE HENRY” He flings himself at Roark, straddling his waist and grabbing him by the collar of the jacket and shook him back and forth like a rag doll. “AND I'M NOT FAT! YOU GIRLY-MAN!”
It actually took Lucan and a few of the other men to pry the enraged prince off poor Roark.
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