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B7 The Ends: Tingash - Chapter 14 
3rd-Dec-2009 06:40 am

Category: Drama, Angst
Rating: Gen
2nd Story of From the Ends to the Beginning

Introduction: Wolves of Tingash.

Note: This chapter was very hard to get right. I had to rewrite most of it several times but I'm still not that sure about it. Feedback would be appreciated. I might make some adjustments depending on how it comes across.

Note 2: Adjustment made for wolf behavior. Marked in blue.

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Chapter Fourteen

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Wolf was stunned. This was his mate. He remembered her beautiful amber eyes.

Torn snippets of pictures floated to the surface of his mind.

The beautiful she-wolf with the eyes that sparkled in the sunlight. The unique, gentle curve of her lips, opened in laughter. Racing the storms together, the wind whipping their faces. Lost in each other's eyes, hers wide and beautiful as a golden moon. Nuzzling her soft, thick fur as she nipped playfully at him.

They were not complete memories, only broken pictures, as if someone had cruelly yanked them out and jumbled them up carelessly.

With each picture of the past, the longing at his centre grew like a previously dry lake that was suddenly overflowing.

How could he have lost his mate for so long and not remembered? Guilt and grief joined the happiness of having found her again.

Avon waited and listened, his curiosity piqued. He heard the mental voice of the female wolf as it spoke to Argus's Wolf. His own psi abilities were extremely limited. That left one possibility.

Wolf stood up and approached his mate, the yearning in his loins and the joy of finding her made his heart burst. His mouth opened in a wolfish grin.

The female wolf stood her ground against the two-legs. She growled in warning and her sharp fangs were on full display. The danger was clear but Wolf was blind to everything except his mate and how beautiful she was when she was angry. He reached out to touch her.

Fangs grazed his forearm in warning, not enough to break the skin but enough to make him yank his hand back.

Wolf yelped in shock, holding his arm protectively across his chest. He looked at her with wounded eyes. "Rrrr?"

"Wolf! Out of the way!" Jenna aimed her gun at the she-wolf.

"Grrr!" Wolf grabbed Jenna's gun with a warning snarl. "Mate." He threw the weapon crashing against a tree.

* Do not try that again, * warned the she-wolf into Wolf's mind.

"Mate?" asked Jenna, not understanding, eyeing the battered weapon at the base of the tree, partially covered by wet clinging leaves.

The pain from the warning nip was barely noticeable, but there was a greater one inside as he came to the crushing realization his mate did not know him in this human body.

* Wolf? * The Argus-Alpha's voice was weak inside its mind. * I remember now. * There was great pain in his voice. * They did this to us. * The human groaned. * It's so cold. *

More memories surfaced. Feelings. A name.

Wolf reached hesitant fingers towards his mate. His voice was hopeful, gentle, and afraid. "Bright-Eyes?"

The she-wolf paced around him warily, * How do you know my name? *

"Interesting," said Avon, who could give clinics on understatements.

With everyone preoccupied, Jenna edged surreptitiously towards her gun. She was feeling very naked without it. A snarl from the she-wolf stopped her and she backed away, palms open. "You mean they know each other?"

“I suspect this is where Argus received his wolf personality.”

Only when Jenna sat down next to Avon did Bright-Eyes stop snarling at her. "They used a real wolf?"

"It appears so."

"So what happened to the real one?"

“I imagine that is what the wolves are trying to find out.”

Wolf said to the she-wolf, "Your name is Bright-Eyes. You are my mate."

The she-wolf shook her head violently from side-to-side. * You are not. The two-legs took my mate. You are a two-legs. *

As an experiment, Avon gathered his mind, as he did when he spoke to Cally.

* He has the personality of a wolf inside his head. *

The golden-eyed creature looked directly at Avon. Her voice in his mind was full of surprise. You speak like a wolf.

* I speak like a human. Which I am occasionally. *

The female wolf shook her head and sneezed. * Two-legs do not speak with their minds. *

Avon tilted his head in amusement. Two-legs?

* Humans use two legs to grip the ground. She sniffed critically. Not an efficient posture for the storms. *

* Ah. A logical wolf. * After all the illogical people he had to endure, finding a logical wolf seemed like an irony of gigantic proportions.

* One would not want to be an illogical wolf. *

* Of course not. Avon smiled. Nor an illogical human. *

* Why would one wish to be illogical?* she cocked her head, her ears flicking.

* Insanity perhaps? *

Wolf eyed them both suspiciously, he recognized the look on Avon's face. It was the expression he had when he spoke to his Cally-mate with his mind.

Jenna was becoming frustrated at the 'loud' lack of verbal dialogue. "Alright what's going on? she huffed, "Are you talking to Cally?"

"No," said Avon. "I'm speaking to the wolf."

"You can't be, I don't hear anything."

"Not our Wolf."

"Avon, if you don't make sense soon, I'm going to think you are insane."

"That would be an improvement."

* Why do you allow your pack to speak to you like this? * the she-wolf asked as she directed a snarl towards Jenna.

Jenna tensed, gauging the distance to the gun and wondering if she could risk it.

Avon asked, * Can you speak so Jenna can hear you? *

* Of course *, said the she-wolf who directed her next words to Jenna as well. * Your pack female is not well trained. *

Avon suppressed a laugh.

Jenna's eyes opened wide. "It's…speaking to me."

"I asked her to," said Avon.

Jenna's eyes narrowed, "Wait a minute. What did she just say about me?"

"She's a wolf." Avon's mind turned to the problems at hand. Despite everything falling apart, he was enjoying this. It was a mystery to solve and he was not hampered by the loss of his sight.

"I can see that! I'm not blind."

The she-wolf eyed Jenna with disapproval. The female needs to be bitten.

Avon gave a half-choked laugh that caused Jenna to glare at them both.

"No one is biting me!"

With the impassive mask back in place, Avon said flatly, "I wouldn't dream of it. Cally would never understand."

The she-wolf huffed, * This female is rudely mannered. *

Jenna fumed. To be criticized for her manners by a four-legged animal was too much after everything that happened.

"She has," Avon tilted his head in Jenna's direction, a smile playing on his lips, "issues."

Only a conscience, and the fact the pack would probably tear her apart, stopped Jenna from diving for her pistol and shooting the two smug Alphas where it really hurt. "You're enjoying this, aren't you?"

"Probably." He turned to the she-wolf. "You've identified Jenna is not the Alpha female?"

* Of course. * The she-wolf licked her paw delicately and rubbed her muzzle with it.


Jenna's increasing outrage turned her face red. "I'll have you know I was born an Alpha!"

* You are Alpha. I can smell your mate on you. It is not this female. *

Avon inclined his head in appreciation. "You truly are a logical wolf."

* And you are a puzzling human. *

"I have been many things."

During this exchange, Wolf's warm brown eyes drank in his mate's beauty even though she glared at him occasionally, annoyed by his rapt attention. His fractured memories included that glare; it filled his body with warmth and excitement.

Avon said, "Wolf, do you remember being with these wolves?"

"One does." His voice was soft and full of affection. The ache for this mate was fierce and touched to the core of his being.

* That is not possible, * said Bright-Eyes, sneezing again. * My mate is a wolf. *

Wolf’s head pounded as he tried to understand. “I...remember...being ...a real wolf.” The pain of saying it was too great. His head bowed and he put a hand to his head. When he lifted his head again, it was with Argus’s anguished yes. “Avon.” He staggered and Jenna reached for him. The ordeal of the last few hours, trapped in a nightmare that had been his life, robbed him of all strength and he sat down heavily. He put his head in his hands. “They...made me into an animal.”

Avon’s voice became quiet. “They conditioned you. Imprinted the wolf onto your mind.”

“Y-yes.” His voice was a half-sob as he recalled the darkness. “I...remember...some of it.”

“This must have been after they took you from the Academy.”

Argus’s fists clenched in anger and his voice was tight. “I...,” It was hard to focus his eyes. “I tried...to fight them, Avon. But...”

Avon’s voice was hard with shared anger. “They were too strong.”

Argus’s eyes squeezed tight, trying to hold back tears. He remembered being a wolf. A creature wracked with pain who struck out to kill its tormenters. “They connected us somehow. I could feel everything it was feeling.” The metallic taste of blood in his mouth as the wolf bit down. Argus shook his head, shaking off the memory as the joy of killing an enemy crept in like a thief. “The wolf’s name...was Brave-Heart.”

Argus Wolf
3rd-Dec-2009 03:14 pm (UTC)
I really enjoyed this chapter. I love the banter about Jenna and Avon enjoying solving the mystery and their dicussion of logic :-) I like how the flashback bits are alluded to but not proper flashbacks which would make the chapter too segmented, I think. It also reflects Argus slowly regaining consciousness.

Ouch. Is that the same arm that keeps getting shot? Poor Wolf/Argus. I half expected Wolf to say 'you're wonderful' to Bright-Eyes. XD

Just generally, I've noticed you're really good at similes. The one about the lake suits wolves too.

Also talking of storms, what happened to the storms on Tingash? Since the wolves are out I'm guessing where they landed is storm-free at the moment.

So if Brave-Heart was Argus' wolf then the previous bits where the mutoids were taking Brave-Heart away took place a long time ago. Is this right? Bright-Eyes must be quite an old wolf and her pups grown up.
3rd-Dec-2009 03:28 pm (UTC)
Also on similes - I read The Name is Avon. You do like similes. They're hilarious.
3rd-Dec-2009 03:55 pm (UTC)
I had a ball making those ones up ;)
3rd-Dec-2009 03:54 pm (UTC)
I'm glad you enjoyed it.

It still reads a bit choppy because of the switches in POV and the multiple things that are happening at once. I might work on that a bit.

Yes, unfortunately, its the same arm.

Similes are fun ;)

Yes, at the moment there is a let up in the storms where they are.

As for the memories and mutoids taking Brave-Heart, that will be revealed soon.
3rd-Dec-2009 04:05 pm (UTC)
I told him to look after that arm! Oh well, maybe it draws fire away from the rest of him where getting hurt could be a lot more fatal. It reminds me of that guy who kept getting hit by lightening...

Mab: ...You are such an idiot *rolls eyes*
Em: Huh
Mab: Tingash. Storms. Lightening.
Em: *facepalms*
3rd-Dec-2009 04:06 pm (UTC)
I see Mab is in *fine* form ;)
3rd-Dec-2009 04:14 pm (UTC)
The problem is no matter how fast I think she always thinks faster than me.

Mab: Maybe I should invite the wolves to the New Year's Eve party...do wolves like lemon meringue pie?
3rd-Dec-2009 04:16 pm (UTC)
They said they would be honoured. They have never tried lemon meringue pie but would enjoy some bones to gnaw on.
3rd-Dec-2009 04:25 pm (UTC)
Em: Are you ordering bones online?
Mab: Of course not
Em: *suspicious*
3rd-Dec-2009 05:01 pm (UTC)
Better keep an eye on Mab...
3rd-Dec-2009 05:26 pm (UTC)
I had this vision of her ordering bones from the elephant graveyard in The Lion King for the wolves.

Mab: I'm not ordering anything from those crazy hyenas. Even if they sell interesting pinatas. So here's the list: 4 lemon meringue pies, 6 bottles of A&S, 2 boxes of bones, a tin of those chocolate things, something-squiggle? Vila, I cannot read your handwriting. I think that was some kind of blue alcoholic drink...Steak flavoured what for Wolf? Wait, that was Corinne's addition. Oh, strawberries! Party decorations, a dartboard with Servalan's face, something for the lonely socks, lots and lots of fireworks...
3rd-Dec-2009 05:29 pm (UTC)
Mab, I hope those fireworks are ship-safe...
3rd-Dec-2009 05:35 pm (UTC)
Mab: Oh they are. Tamara Bagelhead uses them on her airship. They're not actually real fireworks but illusionary ones. I'm sure Avon could design something similar. And it's sort of difficult to set fireworks off in space anyway.
3rd-Dec-2009 09:46 pm (UTC)
Wolf has been in Argus' head for a long time, but the pack are looking for Brave Heart now. So they must have taken him for conditioning people like Argus several times. But didn't have to take him at a time when the pack would notice his disappearance? And Brave Heart has been conditioned to forget just as much as Argus?

But why have they only just become interested in wolf telepathy?
3rd-Dec-2009 09:49 pm (UTC)
Some very good questions there =)
3rd-Dec-2009 10:03 pm (UTC)
And you're going to make me wait for the answers. :~)
3rd-Dec-2009 10:08 pm (UTC)
Hmm, now let me see what I can reveal without spoiling the plot... Maybe some hints?

1) Take special note of what Argus says at the end of this chapter.
2) These are not regular Earth wolves. They have a lifespan at least equivalent to humans.
3) Remember how the Federation scientists were able to verify this was the right wolf.
4) Is there enough information to establish what the Federation scientists want with Brave-Heart?

Edited at 2009-12-03 10:13 pm (UTC)
3rd-Dec-2009 11:00 pm (UTC)
You're being quite generous with your hints for once.
3rd-Dec-2009 11:04 pm (UTC)
Some of them ;)
4th-Dec-2009 01:31 am (UTC)
So Braveheart being Argus' wolf hints at something decidedly sinister in capturing him now. After all they have the records and sso if they have braveheart can they somehow access Argus through Braveheart?

Love the dialogue between Avon and Bright Eyes.

So now all they have to do is enlist the wolves help. Well if it is to rescue her mate, Argus and Wolf would jump at the chance.

Do the wolves know how to get into the base?

When are we going to find out what happened to the others?

Er hadn't Avon better give Cally a "call" to let her know he is all right?
4th-Dec-2009 02:13 am (UTC)
Er hadn't Avon better give Cally a "call" to let her know he is all right?
Yes, Avon needs to learn to 'call home' more often ;)
4th-Dec-2009 01:32 am (UTC) - PS Re Wolf Behaviour
Argus is more likely to get a warning nip than a paw. Wolves and dogs bite, cats scratch.
4th-Dec-2009 01:50 am (UTC) - Re: PS Re Wolf Behaviour
Ahh, ok, I'll change that. Thanks
4th-Dec-2009 01:59 am (UTC) - Re: PS Re Wolf Behaviour
Ok, fixed now.
4th-Dec-2009 05:09 pm (UTC)
Hurrah - love it when Jenna is put in her place!

Enjoyed this chapter very much. :~)

Just one or two things:

'I speak like a human. Of which I am occasionally'
I don't see where you are getting 'of' from. 'Which' is all you need.

I was wondering also whether the broken and torn pictures, presumably photographs by implication, was rather a human metaphor for a Wolf to be thinking in. Unfortunately I can't think of any better way to express it off hand. It needs some pondering...
4th-Dec-2009 05:15 pm (UTC)
'I speak like a human. Of which I am occasionally'
I don't see where you are getting 'of' from. 'Which' is all you need.

Fixed. Thanks.

I was wondering also whether the broken and torn pictures, presumably photographs by implication, was rather a human metaphor for a Wolf to be thinking in. Unfortunately I can't think of any better way to express it off hand. It needs some pondering...

They're fragments of memories. I suppose I could try to make it more 'wolfish' though I'm also trying to convey the idea that Wolf and Argus share some common memories/knowledge because they were 'joined' during the imprinting process and they have been unconsciously working together as one, though they're not aware of it.
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