Hunters of Alrugard OOC
Closed until further notice.
Alrugard. The frozen world.
Current Player Count: 2(3)
It is a world covered in a perpetual winter, nothing stays warm here. Through the ice and snow vicious predators pick off the weak and dying, for this is a land without mercy. Those humans that live here in the wastes of Alrugard do so in vast mobile colonies floating high above the frigid wastes. Death takes many forms here on Alrugard, however, and not even the skies are safe. Giant predatory birds wander the skies looking for anything to eat, sometimes even picking people off the streets of their floating towns. Lithe cat-like beings stalk the tundra looking for an easy kill. Even below ground predators lurk around every bend in the tunnel. Such a world is a harsh place to live, yet through antiquated science the humans stay above the harsh surface for as long as their fuel survives. And so it is that two groups have equal importance here, those who keep the machines running, and those who hunt the surface.
Those who dare to call themselves hunters are those who venture to the surface with little more than torch and spear. These are the men and women of the colonies who brave the hoarfrost blizzards, and the deadly landscape to hunt the packs of herd animals. They are those who keep the colonies fed, the ones who guard the machinists on fuel outings. They are the Hunters of Alrugard. This is their story, a story of bitter isolation in the unforgiving wastes of Alrugard. It is also a story of how they conquered the Galruvian Horror...
It is through our deeds that we can truly call ourselves worthy, for only through action can our valor be determined. This is the way we of the hunters live, this is our choice. We men and women of the colonies make the decision to provide for humanity by daily risking our lives on the surface of Alrugard. The life of a hunter is rough, everyday our life is in danger, be it the landscape of the creatures which call it home. Yet, even though we may die upon the surface of this cruel world, we choose to live there rather than within the safety of the colonies. We choose to separate ourselves from the possibility of becoming part of the society we support because of the society we support. The hunter cannot be loved intimately by one of the colonists because of the fact that we do not truly know if we will survive the night. Even when one of us has earned his stay within the colonies, we are still attached to Alrugard, choosing to go on what is known as The Great Journey. It is on this Great Journey that the hunters become fully one with Alrugard, the one thing that we of the hunters strive for. Yes, we choose to live within the natural laws of Alrugard, and in doing so we become the hunters of those who have stalked these lands for millennia. We keep the Alrugardian cycle as close to us as possible, hunting in accordance to our ancient terran ancestors. The only weapons we use are those we can make from the dead, spears from the teeth of ancient carnivores, clubs from the femurs of large bipeds, and anything the mind can imagine. We frown upon the weapons which kill from afar, choosing to go in and see our prey, and of course killing with those who have been killed. This is our life, a life we chose. Do not look down upon us as savages, for we bring food to humanity, and we do so with the skill of one who loves the very animal they kill. Do not look up to us, for we stand upon the brink of death at every moment, with but a breeze between us and a terrifying death.
For the last few thousand years humanity had struggled to survive on a planet so hostile to them that early colonists had declared it a death world. Humanity took root upon Alrugard on the verge of extinction, faced with being wiped out from within or a bleak existence upon Alrugard. While the records of the colonies do not have much from before Alrugard, they make it clear that all of humanity did not take to the frozen wastes. A great schism formed between those who took to Alrugard and those who chose to continue their travels, vowing to one day come back with proof of their success. Those who fled to Alrugard did so without remorse, as the people they left to the stars were no more their brothers than Alrugard their home. Alrugard, however, decided to make sure that the humans were very aware of what awaited them. As the massive vessels descended from orbit, a blizzard wracked the landing areas with such force that the vessels crashed into the mountains, destroying their hope of hitting the ground running. With their technology all but destroyed humanity was on the verge of extinction. Alrugard had proven to be a cold unfeeling bitch, and now faced with the unfeeling hostile environment, and the remorseless native animal-life, humanity rushed to find a way to stay off the ground. Risking only short trips into the wastelands, the first hunters were born. Forced to become one with the planet, they made do with what they had, creating weapons out of what they killed, and eating whatever they could kill.
It was because of this that when the other humans had been able to convert their orbital colonies into floating cities, the hunters were already too far distant from the humans they had protected and fed. While the years may have passed, the animosity hasn't, keeping the hunters mostly on what has been referred to Great Hunts. The rest of humanity doesn't seem to care that the hunters spend more time on the surface, as when they do return, they bring large amounts of flesh. So, while both groups may be content with their tenuous situation, it couldn't last for long. Just before the last moon cycle of the second era of humanity, disaster struck. A beast had been awoken from humanity's attempts to gather fuel for their floating cities, and the devastation it had wrought spread for miles around. Word got around to the other colonies by the hunters who had seen the devastation, provoking an order from the governors of each city to kill the beast. So it was that the hunters were gathered, and a Great Hunt was rallied for the beast that killed the city of Galruvia. So it was that they hunted a creature whose only knowledge they had of it was what it could do. So it was that they hunted the Galruvian Horror...
Regions of Alrugard
The Equatorial Tundras
The Equatorial Tundras are the only place on Alrugard where humankind can sustain itself. Even then, the Colonies maintain constant movement, always keeping their floating cities far above the ground in the clouds. Because of the Hunters, the Colonists never have need to leave the floating cities, and as such rarely travel outside the confines of their home city. On the surface the Hunters learn to hunt the more docile game of the tundras, and make the trips to the city-ports. The Tundras are also home to the only known water-formation on the planet, as the old cartographer's maps are long gone. This water formation is a large lake that is mostly frozen for most of the year except for a single month. It is during this month that some of the hunters decide to fish the waters and bring the rare delicacies of seafood to the colonies. The Equatorial Tundras is also one of the only regions where bows and javelins can be used to any effect, due to the milder storms of the region.
The Northern Peaks
The Northern Peaks are the mountainous regions north of the Equatorial Tundras, extending all the way to the unknown regions of the Northern Pole. Among the mountains stalks the most deadly predators of Alrugard, from the mountain snow-leopard to the Grixis, a large alien beast more often the end of Hunters than killed by them. The explored area of the Northern Peaks is considerably less then even the Tundras, due to the raging blizzards of the mountains restricting travel severely.
The Southern Ice Fields
The Ice Fields of the Southern Pole is actually one large sheet of ice over what is believed to be an ocean over the southern pole. More dangerous than the myriad ice-predators is the wind-shear of the icy plains, many times reaching upwards 95mph with razored ice-rain. The only hope for those Hunters trapped upon the plains is to lay flat and wait out the ice-rains.
The Coalition of Hunters
On Alrugard the Hunters which stalk its surface can rarely ever be regarded as an organization of sorts. Very few hunts require more than one Hunter, and as such the Hunters typically hunt alone. In the Equatorial regions, though, there can occasionally be seen a gathering of Hunters to discuss the happenings of the world. These gatherings are called the Hunter's Moot, and never do they last long, nor gather more than a dozen at a time, for Alrugard is no place for lingering crowds. These Moots only convene when events happen which may threaten the Hunter's way of life, and require a decision to be made. Outside the Equatorial Tundras the Hunters revert to their solitary nature. Northern Hunters are those who hunt the vast mountain ranges of the Alrugardian Peaks, and they hunt the most dangerous creatures of the world. Southern Hunters are those who stalk the Ice Plains of the Southern Pole, and are more often lost to the intense cold than the predators.
The Hunter's Way
Though the Hunters seem to be a barbaric lot, they have a strict honor system, and can be said to be the only humans who truly appreciate the world they live upon. Indeed, they can be said to love Alrugard, though she is a harsh mistress and demands the most out of any Hunter. It is out of this devotion to Alrugard, that the first Hunters decreed that no weapon could ever be used that had not come from an animal they personally killed. No hunter was allowed to wear a pelt he or she did not slay, and no Hunter ate meat from any but their own kill. No Hunter was permitted to kill needlessly, that no matter what the circumstances, they must take an item of importance from the creature they slew, for to simply leave the creature as it lay without honoring it's spirit would be to anger Alrugard. Because of this many of the Hunters maintain shrines to the World-Spirit dotted amongst the wilds of Alrugard.
As much as I LOOOOOOVE filling out sheets of rather generic questions with questionable generic answers, I like IC applications every now and then. Provide a suitable length IC post detailing your character attending a Moot, in this post you should address the following:
Hunter's Way(How your character hunts, their preferred game, and limitations)
Motivation(Why they take up the quest to hunt the monster)
Now granted, I've set this up in a way that arguably looks like "Super-Mega-Death-Kill-Action*Snow Edition*" While there will be action oriented scenes, the whole roleplay is not to revolve about them. A good portion of the RP will be survival, and tracking to a degree.
Garoff(Meeky) - The Animal
Rahena(Shienvien) - The Predator
Logren Norkald(Shimmerene) - The Night-Hunter, Ghost of the Wind, Child of Alrugard
Although the Hunters can be a distrustful lot, and often times despise the company of a fellow Hunter, there those among them who have made a name for themselves. These Hunters are those who have accomplished either great kills, explored areas no-one else has, or simply lived through events no other should. The Player characters are assumed to be Legendary Hunters, as they would be the only ones either skilled or lucky enough to reach the Great Hunt. There are limits to your legends though, as some beasts are exist only to kill, and some areas have not been explored for a reason.
Blood pounded in Garoff's head. There were too many people here. There was too much noise. He could tell the others felt the same way, and he began to wonder why the damned Moots were even held.
Garoff did not like attending them, though he came out of a sense of duty. He did not talk much when attending them beyond saying what needed to be said. Words... He wasn't good with words. He knew them, and could hear them, and he could get a few out, but they were meaningless to him. Words could lie. Words could betray. Words could be given the illusion of truth, of meaning, of power and strength, but they had none of this.
Action speaks louder than words. Those were the only words that had any truth, and even they were lacking.
There were others gathered in the same circle he was in, centered around a large stone. Garoff observed their gear, comparing it to his own, comparing scars and trophies. Some carried spears of bone; others axes made from a beast's skull. Some had swords made from the teeth of great hunting beasts. Garoff could respect these accomplishments, but he did not share these methods. They hunted like humans. That was the fault he found with them. They were armed for fighting, not for the kill.
Garoff scraped the tusks strapped to his arms together, growling like an animal. His brown skin had been thickened and scarred by years of gutting beasts with tooth and claw. Yes, tooth; his teeth were no sharper than any man's, but he'd torn into a leapord's hide with them. Garoff had punched a hole through the bottom of more than one creature's maw, rammed the claws and tusks he favored right into their brains. Yes... And he was good at killing, not because he was a man, but because he became an animal. He let instinct rule him first, and cunning second. He let himself go, and let the beast in his chest take over. That was the only way to hunt. No... That is the only way to live.
The tall, brown-skinned man snorted, scratching at his black beard. He was tired of waiting. Garoff wanted to get up and go, and it took every ounce of patience in him to not rise up, pull the head of the snow leopard he wore as a cloak over his own head, and walk out.
He was lucky. He didn't have to wait long. A grey-bearded man using a toothy club as a walking stick stepped into the middle of the circle slowly. He raised a hand to the gathered hunters, then dropped it back down.
"This moot was not called lightly," began the old hunter, a man who was nearing the age when he'd go off to die in the snow. "I have come to tell you of a great beast, one greater than anything we have ever hunted before."
Garoff snorted at that. I doubt it, he thought to himself.
The old man heard his snort and stared at the dark-skinned hunter before continuing. "We have learned of a creature so mighty that it has slain a whole city of the sky-dwellers. It ravaged their homes, tore apart almost all their people, and then continued to kill and rampage and destroy. Hunters are needed."
"One hunter is needed," corrected a woman, cracking her knuckles. "This beast is just a beast."
"Other hunters have died to this one already," said the old man coolly. "Their bodies feed Alrugard now. Our world gives us a challenge unlike any we have ever faced, sister. If this beast is not slain, it will destroy not only more colonies, but kill the beasts we hunt. More than one of us is needed to down this one."
Garoff grunted, standing up. This was why he came? He did not come to hear this dying old sack of a man ask for help killing some beast he was too scared to fight. Garoff had real challenges to take on.
Others must have thought the same as he did, or they were leaving because he was. They were standing, too, and preparing to leave. Good, thought Garoff. Let the old coward die on his own.
"I see," came the old man's voice. "I thought I was speaking to those who loved Alrugad and the hunt, not glory-seekers."
That struck a cord. Garoff leaped down from the stone he'd been using as a bench just a moment ago, landing at the bottom of the crude amphitheater. He strode right toward the older hunter, snarling, "Is that a challenge?"
"Yes," the old man said unflinchingly, remaining in the exact same position he had been before Garoff had leapt down, the spitting image of calm. "It is. It's a challenge to prove you are a hunter, and not just an arrogant fledgling."
Garoff ground his teeth together at that. How DARE he? he thought. Rip. Tear. Break. Shatter. He wanted to turn this man into a pile of feces and gore, and he could feel his nostrils flaring, hot air rising from them. Rend. Gnash. Kill. Kill.
Instead, the taller, younger hunter swung his arm out to the side, mouth twitching. "Fine," he snapped. "I will play your game. I will find this beast, and I will kill it, and any pups that want to come... come." Garoff snorted. "Just tell me where to go."
Deep, brownish black eyes observed the imminent surroundings with detached wariness, never ceasing to be fully alert even at a time of relative peace and in spite of the observer's borderline disinterest towards the current happenings before her. One could spot the eyes narrowing or widening almost unnoticeably every now and then, slowly and controlled scanning the area - not flickering uselessly like those of a frightened prey, darting over what should have been watched more closely! -, the pupils presumably slightly dilating and contracting as those adjusted to the minor changes in light, even though the irides surrounding those were dark enough to meld their black centers into their surface. Those were the eyes of of a woman who dared the northern peaks, keen and resilient to the piercing light reflected from the bleak white mountainsides.
It was a dangerous world, the north, and being blinded in it often enough meant death ... as did deafness. This place here was too loud for this particular predator's tastes, however it was not the volume that bothered her. It was the sheer constancy of it, and the utter pointlessness of it. The woman's darkened lips, appearing uneven from having been chapped one time too many, drew back slightly in what might have been a mildly amused smile, baring two rows of slightly yellowed white teeth. The upper right eyetooth was lacking about a third of its length, the tip having been broken off during some event known only to the hunter herself.
The skin on woman's face had been parched by harsh winds carrying needles of ice, the very cold itself, and a sun which was merciless, but gave no warmth, leaving it dry, moderately darkened - where she would otherwise have been almost pale - and rough. Beneath her left eye, on the side of her cheek, stiff pale white torn lines that contorted her meager smile into a somewhat crooked one marked the site of an old injury, and a chunk of her left earlobe had been removed, though her hair mostly hid the latter fact. Her hair itself was a flowing mess, brownish black like her eyes, wavy and dropping down to her upper back.
Her nose had somehow remained mostly intact through all past confrontations, unlike her left ear, and even had a fine line; the same, her facial structure could despite its lack of refined delicacy easily have belonged to someone who was not bad-looking in her own simple and almost robust way, however the hunter's life had left its marks on her, leaving her with scars, roughened skin, hardened expression and prematurely developing wrinkles. One could have thought her over forty by her face, though in reality she was merely thirty-four, and in far better physical shape than most of her age. Living to even this age as a hunter was a fine testimony of being capable by itself.
- Fickle health and weak body did not make a good match with the hunter's lifestyle, and her five-foot-ten frame was at its prime indeed, more muscled than soft, the waist narrow and hips well-defined - giving her a figure that was at least somewhat feminine even despite the heavy clothing -, but her chest having relatively humble proportions, and with her current attire looking almost flat.
Rahena - thusly she had been named - evidently did not consider herself as belonging to where she was, and hence she simply sat, her fit body emanating the same feel any bothered predator's would have, relaxed but yet impatient, ready to tense up and act at a moment's notice. She was silent, and not many tried to speak to her unbidden. Social interaction did not bother her, however ... rather, she simply felt no need to initiate a conversation, no need to add anything before it became apparent that she had something to say, and the impression she gave was not one of being easily approachable.
If one had successfully lead an asocial life for as long as she had without feeling the need to go back amongst other people, one ceased to care about making contacts. Or, perhaps, the fact that she had not felt the need to return to civilization was just an expression of her internal nature. A born hunter and lone wanderer, if one wished to put it so, indifferent towards her fellow humans, but not minding their existence, either. Hence, she did wander mostly alone, and hunted, and, every now and then, brought her kills back to humanity.
She had plated her arms in the natural shielding her chosen prey for one day had been protected with, and atop of the odd light gray speckled fur-garments shielding her from the unforgiving climate that would have otherwise leeched every last ounce of warmth from her she wore something akin to an odd scalemail vest, though a closer inspection would have easily revealed the individual sections to be small scalelike plates dislodged from some creature's hide, drilled holes in, and joined up with sinew to cover the winning predator's body instead. Her boots were heavy and the soles of those were equipped with small bony spikes to help scale cliffs; her narrower waist surrounded by a belt hosting a number of bone knives, and two oddly-gleaming light-colored ones.
Her main weapons, however, hung on her back, the two curved organic blades of each - four rather intimidating spikes altogether - all individually reaching about two and half feet long. In fight, she held those in hand, locked to her arms... She had not had such claws naturally - hence she had made herself such.
Ever since she had made her first kills and acquired the materials to make her own weapons and attire she had wielded and worn only those, forever discarding the equipment she had lent from civilisation to be able to make those first kills.
And killed she had... Many a prey she had felled, and thus far, none had gotten her instead. One day, either because of vaning strength and failing reflexes, or because of simple misfortune, or because she simply proved to be not superior to her chosen prey and the tables got turned, she would probably die hunting and be torn to shreds, but until now it had not happened. This was a world where a few creatures fed on the meager mosses of the tundras, and another few gnawed on the bones left behind by those who had already gotten their fills, and predators preyed on those miserable carrion-eaters and herbivores ... only to be targeted by even bigger and more lethal predators themselves. And then, there was always an even larger predator about, to hunt those predators of predators.
Alrugard was a world of predators. And in a sense, it was an honest world, since predators only killed to eat, and eat they had to, and there was never any question what their intent was. It was also a simple world. Cruel and merciless, that was true, but it did not actively try to deceive one into thinking otherwise.
Rahena, too, was a predator - or such she considered herself to be. She had to eat and feed and cover herself, and to be able to do that, she killed. Physically, she was weaker than many of the monsters lurking about, but she was maneuverable and skilled - and armed with the weapons she had looted from those that had proven inferior and adapted for herself. She did not always shy away from targeting predators of predators, since although those were powerful, they usually had a weakness or two.
Many creatures had an effective range - they were dangerous when a few yards away, since with one leap they could reach one and deal a lethal strike, but often enough those creatures had little they could do against someone latched to their backs. And so she had, a number of times, found herself holding onto a creature, warm blood soaking her gloves as it gushed from the struggling beast's neck - the wound her obtained claws were lodged to, with her just holding onto the struggling creature and hoping that it would not get her off - since the next thing she would know in that case would be that the beast she had tried to kill had torn her own guts out. It was always at once a relief and a strange sensation of elation - or was it reverence? - when the muscles of the beast grew lax and it slowly slumped to ground, gradually becoming lifeless.
Something happened amongst the other hunters - something always happened, but it seemed they were trying to decide something now. Rahena observed the happenings coolly, her smile fading and expression becoming something that could almost be mild interest. Almost. The old man spoke with useless pathos. Big words. Pointless words, as poitless as most of this noise here. Another two hunters spoke up, taking up the quest. She herself did not care for glory or reputation, and the challenges she took were her own... Yet, there was a certain temptation, separate from glory and the other hunters' derisive comments.
"Every creature has its weaknesses," she insisted, her eyes briefly moving to the old man. Her voice was slightly raspy from her throat being subjected to cold too often, and the spacing between words was uneven. She did not speak often. Her gaze moved to the two volunteers, a dark-skinned man and a tiny woman. "I am coming."
Unconventional, this is the first thought that crosses any of the other hunters' minds when they see Mia. She respected the traditions greatly, using materials only from the beasts that she hunted to craft weapons and supplies with, but she didn't use the standard spears, swords, or clubs. No, she didn't really on the standard weapon to take her prey down, but instead trapping.
You see, Mia is a very small girl. At her peak, she is around 5'6" and around 120 lbs at best, meaning she can't really on the use of heavy weapons to attain her kills. Instead, she uses a variety of traps. With her small stature, she is actually light enough to walk along snow and ice without displacing it to much, given her the advantage of speed when traversing the different areas of Alrugard. With this speed, she uses herself as bait to draw in beasts, and once they played into her hands, the would fall to her traps.
String triggers were the most common, usually either releasing spikes made from the bones of previous kills, or even heavy rocks that Mia had displaced. This was her style, and it was definitely an unconventional style of hunting, but it is how she works. In addition to her trapping, she uses a special net made from leather straps, the leather she makes herself of course, and a trident created from the bones of her first kill. Should her traps fail, the net can be used to tangle beasts and allow her to impale the beasts with her trident. She also wore a pelt around her entire body, hiding her tan skin, and it was adorned in sharpened bones of the many kills she had claimed. It served as a warning to beasts, a trophy case to her peers, and also a defense if her prey fought back, they could be wounded if they struck the wrong place.
Still, whether the others respected or despised her, she understood and perfected her method of hunting. This didn't mean she felt uncomfortable at the moot. She was one of the more social hunters, but with her style, many tended to stray from her. She had many kills, but since she was sort of an outcast, she was treated as such.
When the moot had truly began, she fell silent and let the old man speak. She had no intention of leaving. If the prey was as dangerous and hard to kill as the old man had claimed, then this would most likely be Mia's way of becoming a respected hunter.
She grinned to herself as she saw the others leave, and contained a laugh when she heard the old man insult them all. Finally, one of them spoke about agreeing to the hunt, Mia smiled and decided to step in.
She approached the man and stood beside him saying "Well, I guess that makes two of us that will be hunting this prey." She didn't care what this guy had in mind, or why he even changed his mine. Maybe it really was the insult, maybe something else, that didn't matter to her. She had only one goal in mind, claiming the kill of this beast and rising to the top of the hunters. She wouldn't be an outcast any longer, she'd be the best out of all of them.
I too am reserving this post for an IC post within this weekend.
There. Edit made. It's not my best work, but I hope it gives an idea of what Garoff is like.
Meeky, your character is accepted. As character's are accepted I'll add a title to them, mainly as a way of remembering who's who, but also for a bit of flavor.
Edited mine as well. I went less for a one line back and forth (since Meeky did that already) and wanted to get a more introspective post on my character.
Added your App to the accepted list Sekai, also added a small note on Legendary Hunters to the main post below the accepted characters list.
I'm going to post a character here when I have the time (hopefully during the week). This looks to be a very interesting setting.