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#1 2019-09-28 20:34:35

Ol'random
Member
From: Somewhere by the Mountains
Registered: 2018-05-24
Posts: 46

"Maybe some traveling will do you some good." Sat 28/9/19

John, a squirrel
Xander, a badger
A few spoofs

Xander walks along, he doesn’t have his blade, like he usually does and he by himself, but he is alert to what is around him still.

The evening was rather peaceful, with the chill of the Autumn night not setting in just yet. Light from the last of the sunlight danced in the River Moss, and alongside it played a young mouse and his younger sister, making quite the noise with plashes and giggling. Further up the shore closer to the trees was the camp they came from, and already a fire was prepared and the smell of food drifted into the forest from it, with a few beast rushing back and forth to finish preparing the dinner. However, a squirrel wasn't taking part in the cooking and cleaning, instead sitting a little further into the tree. With his back to one of trunks, John is cleaning his blade, keeping watch of the woods as he does so.

Xander finds the campsite and keeps his distance, though he is fairly close to John. He doesn't get any closer as he frowns, maybe he should just go south and not north, he has no clue where to go, there is always east maybe from here, just...not Ferravale, or the shrew camp..heck even where the otters are right now is unwise in his mind.

John catches sight of the badger, not recognizing him, while the camp remains unaware of the badger. The squirrel sets his sword gently down on the cloth next to him after sheathing it, offering a long yawn, stretching. One paw connects with the crossbow laying nearby, bringing it closer and aimed in Xander's direction. "Oi!" John calls out, watching the badger, "Who goes there?"

Xander tenses up when he catches site of John......and the crossbolt and frowns "John....."He says softly, a glance at the camp and back to John "I'm...not going to your camp, don't worry just happen to be walking in this area.”

The camp ignores both John and Xander, having learned long ago that sometimes the former can be quite paranoid, while they simply didn't hear the latter.  John lowers the weapon at his name, still not sure who the badger is. "Honestly, I wouldn't bother m’self," he says, shrugging, "They're sometimes a loud bunch and there's little time to yourself back there, you know." After a moment or so, he tilts his head, peering at Xander with the crossbow now laying harmlessly on his lap. "You don't happen to be Xander, are you?”

Xander nods, it's fine...he can tell him who he is but he keeps an eye on the crossbow"Yeah...it's me..guess your back in the area then”

"Aye, well," John laughs, setting the crossbow aside, "I've been back a few times now." Following this, he starts to stand, albeit with some effort via pulling himself up the tree to stand upright, favoring his right leg. "I got caught by a group of bandits back in the day, though I don't know if they were with Ormaz and all them," he taps his leg, "They beat me and stole most of my gear, leaving me for dead. The beasts back there found me. Anyway..." He adds, "How are things with you?" Looking the badger up and down, his brows furrow. "Where's your blade? Or pack?”

Xander frowns "I.."He frowns, "Don't have it anymore.."He seems to not want to go into detail, he frowns, darn a pack might of been useful, maybe he can ask Patch or just not."I'm..."He sighs "Leaving Mossflower" Yes thats a plan he has he just isn’t sure where to go,  in his mind  familiar places would be bad.

Nodding, John replies, "If you want any advice, I'd go south if I were you - the winters are warm and pleasant!' He smiles, pointing over his shoulder to the camp. "And if you'd like, I can get you a pack."
Xander he is interested "I..d..don't need much.."He frowns "The..abbey.."He sighs, no he wont mention the abbey, sides the abbey can handle it's self its not the end of the world, though in his mind he may be.

"Right then." John bends down, packing up his things, "Give me a few moments to clear this stuff - then I'll see to you." The squirrel noticed the sigh, pausing as he wraps the sword up in the cloth, then continues. As he swings the crossbow over one shoulder, he asks, carefully, "How is the ol' abby, anyway?"

Xander frowns "It's..standing..no hordes or anything, they just.."He takes a deep breath, "Need a new abbot" They do not but Xander believes him dead so..

That stops John. "Eh, what was that?" He asks, turning to face Xander. "Did poor Benar finally kick the bucket?" Letting out a sigh of his own, the squirrel shakes his head. "Guess Oz is the last elder around from when I was young..." He starts walking back to the camp, gesturing for Xander to follow. 'But I guess that's life, eh? Come on."

Xander feels the tears go down his face, he might not talk about Benar but the squirrel just had to mention Oz, who did he have to mention Oz...a sob escapes him, a cough and a voice trying to not cry "Mother...Krisha is..the ..the dibbun mother…probally temporally in charge of the abbey till..till"He drops to his knees, this is getting to be too much as he makes a fist and slams it into the ground.

John, now thoroughly confused, drops the gear in his arms as the badger's fist hits the ground. "Woah there, mate," the squirrel says, keeping a bit of distance between himself and Xander, "I'm sorry to hear that..." Trying to lift the mood a bit, he adds, in a light tone, "Well, not about Krisha being the new badgermum - good for her - but about, well, Oz..." He winces, realizing that fell flat. The other beasts in the camp have noticed the two now, but stick to the meal that they've begun eating. John can handle himself is what one mutters to another, and loud laughs can be heard in response to some unheard joke. The squirrel, however, has dropped all humor, crouching down considerably closer to Xander, reaching out a paw to touch his shoulder. "Listen, Xander," he begins, his voice soft, "Oz was the one in charge of me in m'teen years when I first came to Redwall - while I tended to ignore his advice back then - he was a great beast nonetheless, he was."

Xander does his best to control tears, Oz is dead, that part is true .The abbot is just recovering, yet Xander think's he died.."He's..gone, he's dead and I wasn't even thar when he died..Benar and Lacota was by his bed when..when he died..I found out  later in teh great hall..I keep failing and messing everything up its why I'm leaving...anyone who really cared..is gone and wot little did don’t care now..."

A mirthless chuckle escapes John, who shakes his head. "Well, I only just found about his death now." The squirrel falls silent for a long time, pondering Xander's words. "So a failure, eh?" He finally says. "No, I wouldn't say that just yet." Standing, he looks down at Xander. "You only fail if you give up, y'do- like me. While Oz and I were always friendly, there are - were - a few things I wished I'd said." A long sigh escapes him, though he continues," And now I wont ever be able to - heck, I don't think I even tried to make it clear to Oz how much I appreciated him - him or the Benar, to be frank. That's failure, y'know." Another sigh, "Not trying. And you've always tried. Y'messed up, absolutely, but I did too - and so did Oz, and Benar, and all the rest! Messing up isn't failure - it only is if you give up." The squirrel shrugs. "And as for those who don't care - that seems out of character for the abbey. Hellsgates, if I were to pick one thing to annoy me most about them all there its that they care, care too much. So I'm sure they care 'bout you, eh?" He offers smile again, going once more to kneel down by Xander. "Some of the beast at the abbey still care for me, and they have far less reason to care for me rather than you, y'know."

Xander is listening or maybe somewhat, it's unclear.He frowns as he still in his mind has to leave "I'm...stilll not staying around, the abey doesn't..need me and there isn’t amny...Defenders that dont have jobs elsewhere now...or that left..Zolomon joined the Long Patrol...Keldron decided to be a novice and wil be a Brother one day..Sinway is a Brother now or maybe I will start a new group elsewhere"

"Maybe some traveling will do you some good." John says, shrugging. "Does for me. Clears the head, makes one appreciate things more. After all," he smiles more fully, "They do say absence makes the heart grow wider..." He pauses, looking down for a moment, "Or was it fonder? Anyways, fighting and defending and all that isn't all there is to life, y'know. Seasons know that took me nearly a half lifetime to figure out m’self." Shifting so that the squirrel is sitting next to the badger, John shrugs. "And even if the folk at the abbey don't need you, you don't know if they don't want you, you do."

Xander frown "Why would they..want me?" He sighs and keeps it at that, a nod "Travel, yeah..clear the head could be good  and a new place to like...think"

"Xander, look." There's stern look on John's face as he says, "You've always been a helpful beast. It's why I like you. Now, I've been harsh, extremely so, to you in the past, and I'm sure so have many other beasts. Yet you've always done your best, leastways from what I've seen o'you," John says, resting his paw on his sore knee, rubbing. "Agh, besides, even if some beasts back there don't want you, I'm not quite convinced every beasts wants you up and gone. You've done more good for this cursed forest than most folk, m'self included."

Xander frowns and starts to walk away, but looks at John, a long silence, "I..have?" He is curious as he has more attention on John now than he did before, the earlier words do sort of play back in his memory as he thinks, least he can remember things still, just some other things are a bit..swiss cheese like for him for now "Like..wot?"

"Starting the defenders, for one thing." John replies nearly as soon as the badger asks. "Also -" the squirrel says, quickly, "I know I gave you a lot of trouble for that group, but you were the one running it and you were the only who was really trying back then. Trying in the right ways, that it." He stands, again, with a loud groan, stretching his back. Afterwards, he looks back at Xander. "The fact you went to the hare mountain also helped, and all the good you must have done while you've been at Redwall- you don't strike me as the lazy sort. Just being around there you've done something better than me, y'know."

Xander is thinking on his words, he sighs a little.."I..did get help, I remember..remember that"He has a headache great."And some things..I don’t remember, some vermin sort of..injured me and  forgetting some 3-4 seasons a little but remembering more of that..fight. they had my.."He frowns "My daughter...they killed her and sort of a blur most of the fight, Ferro said like 15 died of the vermin, only  a couple escaped and think thy were tracked down..."

"Oh..." As Xander mentions his daughter's fate, John falls silent, only muttering a quiet, "I'm so sorry..." The bushy tail swishes back and forth behind him, and further behind that can be heard the sound of beasts enjoying themselves, their outlines visible against the fire behind them. "Xander..." The squirrel starts, again, "You did all you could - there's fifteen less bandits out there to pry on the unfortunate..." Looking down at his boots, John takes a deep breath, "I'm sure beasts at the abbey will miss you, or do already. Especially anyone who knew her..."

Xander nods "Beasts knew her yeah......miss me?" He seems unsure as he frowns and loks at his paw or more so a ring on his paw , he stares at it a long while it seems, twsiting it once with his fingers.."Krisha might miss me..."A couple tears go down his face in thought, she probally look for him if she wasn’t so busy now, his fault.."I..still..I need..maybe I won't leave Mossflower, I..I don't know.”

John looks at the ring as well, though he doesn't comment on it. Instead, he nods, saying, "Aye, and I'd make a guess that Krisha does especially considering her new role as Badgermum. Probably at the end of her rope dealing with the little tykes, could use any help you've got." Looking over his shoulder and back to where a particularly loud yelp came from the camp, the squirrel asks, "Do you still want that pack?" Having decided the sound was nothing serious, he turns back to look Xander in the eye. "I also think I got an extra spear laying 'round here somewhere if you wanted, you know.”

Xander nods, a weak smile "Sure...even a little will help..and Krisha would also be doing like...Abbot stuff, for now..I think"He isn’t for sure if that would be her or the champion, he clearly still has a lot on his mind but not as much and maybe some other thoughts are less now, "A spear be fine, it's..still a weapon and I did learn to use  things besides a blade...like  a spear and a staff...just  not longbow, thats...not a good thing in my paws"He frowns at a memory but also a light chuckle at another slightly funnier.."I..sort of pined someone's ear ta this..like target thing...had ta carry a target board, and a hare to the abbey...sort of funny now..as he was fine just had a permit hole in his ear,  the worse was when an arrow went in markets footpaw..luckily he had really thick boots and I...never touched a longbow again"

"Well," John replies, going to rub the torn ear of his, "That's a decent reason, I suppose. iIf it means anything, spears are far easier to use than a longbow - just stab and repeat." He laughs now, himself. "Can't imagine that hare was none too pleased with you, eh? Ah well, you win some y'lose some." Turning sharply back towards the camp, John waves for Xander. "Come on, my stuff's over here." The squirrel's heading for the wagon furthest from the fire.

Xander nods as he goes to follow John, he seems a little less..well down now, but he still has some tears, he wipes away . He speaks "Your...good with advise John...gave me some things ta...think on"

"Am I?" John says, laughing, "I daresay thats the first I ever heard that!" Quieting, he looks back at Xander, stopping. "In all seriousness, no problem. Though to be fair to me, most of what I said is stuff I've needed to hear m'self, if I'm being honest...Oh!" Squirrel spins around, running back into the woods and right past Xander with a muttered "'Scuse me!" Before stooping and picking up the gear he'd left on the ground. When stands up and turns back to the badger, gear held in both arms, the squirrel's smiling sheepishly, looking down as he passes Xander once again. "Say," he asks over his shoulder, "I might go to Redwall soon - anything you'd want me to tell the beasts there?”

Xander manages a small smile, maybe he should go back to the abbey...no. he can't but what happen was an accident, but they  wouldn’t believe him, he frowns a little in thought, he closes his good eye and reopens it, no..they care, they do..right, the squirrel has to be..right...but he still needs time to think, somewhere"Tell Krisha..I love her..."He will get the spear and the  small sack of supplies and heads south, he almost stayed the night but no, he is fine..sides he has walked in the dark before, but  as he walks south he will avoid the abbey, maybe a bit of southwest is good……..yeah

Having given Xander the supplies needed, and having promised to let Krisha know, John watches the badger disappear back south into the woods. After a minute or so after he losses sight of him, the squirrel turns back to the camp with a long sigh. "Tonight was bad for tidings..." He mutters to no-one. Startling as someone gives a polite cough next to him, he turns red. A bowl of soup is offered to him by the other squirrel standing between wagons, and, overcoming his momentary embarrassment, he smiles as he accepts it. "Thanks, Raina."

Meal in paw, John returns to sit against a tree-trunk, preparing for the long night watch.


Atticus Flintfoot, a ferret wanderer from the Woodlands,
John R. MacGarran, a squirrel veteran from the East-Sea,
Terrence W.H. Cadwallader, Jr., a hare fighter from the Mountain,
and Vasily 'Spruce' Pineson, a squirrel rascal from a small town.

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