Legacy of War - Vare's Breeding Challenge

Varethyn
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Legacy of War - Vare's Breeding Challenge

Unread post by Varethyn » Fri Sep 06, 2019 6:08 pm

Saba had had it all. Bearing the very same hide as the Windsinger, the Wind Deity, the young Spiral had been pampered with luxuries, trained vigorously in the art of battle and was generally held in high regard. Drifting lazily through the clan grounds, twirling around the bamboo stalks and slumbering wherever she so felt like in the moment... Saba's life was bliss.

But it's always possible to have too much of a good thing.

If there was anything that did not match the lithe green dragon to the whimsical god it was their personalities. Windsinger joked and laughed. Saba demanded and snarled. Windsinger sang and wrote. Saba barked commands and avoided responsibility. Windsinger loved to explore, learning new ideas. Saba was perfectly content at home doing her own thing.

This did not stop the Spiral from proclaiming herself "true" descendent of the winding green Deity; where all Spirals like herself and those posturing peacocks called Skydancers were modeled in His image and all blessed by His element were considered His children, she had everything He had. And that made her His successor one day.

And He did not like that.

It did not seem by chance that an errant gust sent her tumbling into the large, orange arms of the Guardian who had taken her as his Charge. The garishly bright dragon with the appalingly dull wings by the name of Rabi who followed her every move, making sure she was safe.

She was Windsinger's essence incarnate, she needed no Guardian to protect her!

And yet, here they were; him holding her close as their eyes inadvertantly met. It was with fear and disgust that Saba squirmed free of his grasp upon realising he was trying to embrace her. It was no secret that he was entirely smitten with his Spiral Charge, and it was for this reason Saba did her utmost to avoid him. Yet something, or someone, was toying with her today as another strong eddie thrust her straight back into the firey-hided dragons arms once more.

"I think Windsinger approves of our relationship." Rabi crooned at her, running a rough tongue over her smooth hide lovingly. Pulling with all her might the Spiral resisted his grip, eventually pulling free once more but daren't hover too much father away in case it happened again.

"I think Windsinger is trying to annoy me." Was her sharp reply, undulating as she was in the air ahead of the Guardian. It was so comical, their size difference. How Guardians and even larger breeds managed to procreate with other dragon species was nigh incomprehensible. And disturbing, Saba noted as she shook her wedge-shaped head hard and fast to rid herself of any unwanted images.

"Then why would He push us together so?" Her large eyes rolled in their sockets as Rabi once again attempted an advance. The action made her flinch away once more only, as expected, for yet another breeze only just strong enough to send her wheeling back into the stocky Guardian's embrace.

Shooting out of the way of the male's arms before he even had the chance to close them the Spiral glared at the cloudless skies overhead, raising her voice to its maximum and shouting, "What's the big deal?!"

Nothing happened at first, leaving the Spiral simmering in frustration where she hung. With the lack of noticeable response Saba threw up her thin yet well-muscled arms and turned with intent to leave.

Only to freeze as a soft wind carried the sound of audible laughter past both their ears.

"See? We're meant to be!" Rabi bounce up to her side, staring at her pleadingly. Why was he so intent on this? On insisting they were a pair?

Parting her jaws to retort Saba's voice was ripped from her throat as the winds grew stronger around them. Literally around them; circling them, guided, intended. A faint outline of what initially appeared to be a giant Spiral wrapped loosely around the pair, almost nose to tail, enveloped in the zephyrs. "I must say, I do agree." An ethereal voice quipped in amusement as the gales continued to whip about. "A story waiting to be written. The plot is set, the characters in place. The first lines need only be scrawled."

Neither Guardian nor Spiral moved an inch as the Windsinger Himself wound around and around, laughing all the while. "I've been watching you, little pretender." He said in a singsong way, His voice a chiming melody. "And truthfully, I do not care for your claims." There was no malice, only humour as the whispy figure launched itself to twist and turn and twirl above their heads, revealing himself in full. "I must agree with your large friend: the two of you make the finest couple."

"As if!" Saba spat out of sheer disbelief for what was happening to her, forgetting momentarily who she was arguing with.

"Tsk tsk." Windsinger tutted, waggling a long finger at the impersonator. "And here I was going to such lengths to bring you two closer." He shrugged, let loose another gaffaw as He once again wound His sinuous body around the bewildered dragons, resting his head in His hands as he rested His front half on the ground alongside them, back half still weaving and waving. "Little Saba," the Spiral all but fell to the ground at being directly addressed by her Deity, narrowly avoiding being supported by Rabi, "you have done me both a great service and a great disservice at once. You train and build your strength to fight within the ranks of my army. And yet you meander about my lands, the lands I gave to you, claiming to be my own flesh and blood.

"I do not care for this."

All humour vanished from those words along with His smile, the winds roaring into unrelenting gales that would sweep away the largest Imperial should they stand in the way. It was only the safe eye the Windsinger had created in the centre of the maelstrom that prevented Saba and Rabi from doing the same, though they were still buffeted greatly by the force.

"Saba." Windsinger's words suddenly sported a hint of amusement again, his eyes narrowing and brow raising as if planning some prank or game. "I wish to make a deal with you."

"A deal?" The Spiral repeated, far more scared than she had ever felt in all her years battling against monsters and beastclans and encroaching wilderness, shaken by the gusting cage she had been trapped in with the absolute last dragon she'd want to be there. "What... what do you mean?"

The great Deity relaxed, allowing His long body to flow serenely once more, though the whirling walls remained as violent. With a smile cracking his lips He replied, "I wish for you and Rabi to start a family together."

"WHAT?!"

"You do?!" The orange-scaled Guardian chimed in, his joy matching his Charge's horror.

"I do." Windsinger replied with a nod, a mischievous glint in her eye. "However, there is something I want you to do for me."

Saba swallowed hard. "Anything o Windsinger." With all her antics she had not intended anything like this to happen and was intent on getting back into her Deity's good graces. Although... I should not have said that. She thought sullenly as she remembered the first part of the agreement.

"Really now? So you agree?" She did not like the way He said that, the way He was looking at them. Before the Spiral could amend her statement Windsinger continued, "Oh joyous day! Then you will be willing to send all of the children from your clutch to aid my armies?"

All their children. All of them. He was pushing them together, forcing them to start a family just so He could take it away again?"

"Of course I should leave you with one in order to continue your lineage." Windsinger mused thoughtfully, as if the idea only then crossed His mind. "In which case, I ask the same of them. Start a family, send the offspring save one to join the cause, repeat until I am satisfied."

It took some time for this to sink in, Saba finding herself exchanging a glance with an uncomfortably happy Rabi. "And if I refuse...?"

His gaze darkened once again and a sudden gust sent the Spiral to the floor. "THen I shall reclaim my essence from you and exile you from the Plateau."

Start a family with someone she disliked and giving up most of her progeny or lose her magic and be cast out from her homeland. A shudder ran down the length of Saba's snakelike body, not keen on either choice.

"Please Saba, let us do this." Rabi's face filled her vision as he stood protectively over where she had fallen. "Let us appease Him together. You do not deserve to be stripped of your powers." Then he bowed his head solemnly. "But let it be known that if you choose the latter after all I will still follow and protect you until my dying breath."

"Aww, how thoughtful and curtious!" Windsinger beamed, clutching his spindly hands together and gazing down at them like young hatchlings.

Either way she was stuck with him. Great. Taking in a long, deep breath to steady herself and think clearly Saba weighed her options. At least if she had to nest with the big lug she would still be aiding the Windsinger by giving up her children to fight for Him, she supposed.

"I do not like either choice," the Spiral started, picking herself up and pushing away from Rabi, "but I agree to your terms, o Windsinger. My descendents-" the Guardian snorted behind her. "Our descendents," she corrected dourly, "will be your soldiers."

No more words were spoken. Windsinger let out an exuberant bout of laughter, lifting Himself into the sky and spiralling up and up and up until He could no longer be seen, taking with Him the swirling barricade.

"I guess this is my life now." Saba lamented even as Rabi took her into his arms once more.

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WHY DO I DO THIS TO MYSELF

Seriously I have enough projects going here, there and everywhere and yet as soon as I see something interesting I have to try it for myself :lol: *Flops in a corner.*

So yes, I "misclicked" while browsing the auction house earlier on and I guess I have a challenge pair now. No, I do not know where the above RP came from. Do not expect much, if any, more in future updates unless my mind is inspired as heavily as it was tonight. All that creative energy is reserved for my Pinkerlockes!

"But what is a legacy of war challenge?" you might be asking. Well, first and foremost this is by no means my own idea. It is inspired by Sabariel's Legacy of War challenge which in turn is a variation of the original Legacy challenge. The original challenge sees players breed several pairs of dragons, one side of which being the offspring of the previous pair, for 10 generations with the aim to go from an ungened starter to an attractive triple-gened dragon.

A Legacy of War challenge sees the offspring of a pair fight to the death in the coliseum to determine the "heir" of the challenge, as opposed to the Legacy challenge's rule of the Firstborn automatically taking that role. The siblings fight until they are KO'd - the last one to be KO'd being the heir. No breaks, no healing, no giving them stat points. This gives more variety in what kind of heir you get while also potentially making some money from the levelled siblings that don't make the cut. The goal is the same - go from an ungened starter to an attractive triple-gened dragon.

I shall be using Sabariel's modified rules for this to make it longer and more (hopefully) interesting.
Sabariel wrote: These rules have been pulled from Dreamnorn's old thread.
Basic Rules wrote:1. Begin with your founder -- a triple-Basic dragon with a plentiful breed (Fae, Guardian, Mirror, or Tundra). The other challenges recommend buying or hatching a G1, but you could be lazy like me and buy the cheapest triple-basic plentiful dragon on the Auction House.

2. Buy the founder a mate. The only rules here is that they must be breedable with the founder and cost 10kt (or its equivalent in gems) or less!

3. When they're both RTB, breed them. Only their first nest for any given breeding counts for this challenge, but don't worry if you get one-egged. In a way, you're considered lucky for that....

4. If you had a one-egg nest, then congratulations! That hatchling is your heir by default, and there will be no bloodshed in this generation. However, if you had two to five eggs, go to the heir selection quote box below this one. Follow the instructions there.

5. Once your heir has been selected (or defaulted to), buy them a mate. This mate must be worth 10kt times the current generation number or less off the Auction House. So for Gen 2 your price ceiling will be 20kt, for Gen 3 it will be 30kt, and so on.

6. Continue until the tenth generation's nest has hatched. The final survivor will be the winning dragon! I will be utilizing one of the Optional Rules (specifically All From Nothing) stated in the last quote box with my goal.
Heir Selection (For Nests with 2+ Eggs) wrote: Wait for these dragons to grow up because they need to be adults in order to compete in the Coliseum. Do not sell or exalt any of them in the meantime. Once they are adults, they will be forced to battle in order to determine who carries on the legacy -- and yes, this includes the dragons that made no genetic progress!

Some general rules for these scenarios are as follows:

---

1. You must keep a battle streak going, even if your dragons level up between fights. This is to prevent you from inputting points into areas that would allow one contender to be more likely to succeed over another.

2. You cannot use any sort of potion or spell on your contenders to heal them or boost their stats temporarily.

3. You cannot alter the contenders' starting battle stones.

4. When a contender faints, they are considered defeated or dead, and thus disqualified from being your heir.

5. For most of these scenarios, a third level-one dragon may join in at least one battle streak. This will be called a "coach," and if they faint, it has no effect on what happens. You may also alter their battle stones beforehand, if you so wish. This is optional, as you can go into a battle with less than three dragons, but recommended to extend the drama.

---

Now, depending on how many hatchlings your nest had, here is how the battles will occur...

~

2 Eggs

1. Send both of the contenders (and the coach, if using one) to the Training Fields. Begin your battle streak. If you use a coach and they faint first, keep going; they have no effect on the final outcome.

2. Keep going until one of the contenders faints! The survivor will carry on the legacy.

3 Eggs

1. Send all three of the contenders into the Training Fields. Begin your battle streak.

2. When one of the contenders faints, keep going. They may look alive, but they have been officially disqualified.

3. When another contender faints, you may stop! The survivor will carry on the legacy.

4 Eggs

1. Send the first two contenders by birth order (hatchlings 1 and 2) into the Training Fields (with a coach, if using). Begin your battle streak. If you use a coach and they faint first, keep going; they have no effect on the final outcome.

2. Keep going until one of them faints. Set aside the survivor for now.

3. Repeat step one, but with the final two contenders by birth order (hatchlings 3 and 4). If you used a coach for the first round, you may either re-use the same one or pick a new one.

4. Keep going until one of them faints. Set aside the survivor for now.

5. Take the victors of the first two battle streaks into a new streak (with whichever coach you prefer or a fresh one, if desired). You can only give a coach stat points before this final round!

6. Commence the final battle streak with the winners from the first two and keep going until one of them faints. The survivor will carry on the legacy.

5 Eggs

1. Flip a coin. If it lands on heads, then the middle hatchling (3) will be in a trio with the first two hatchlings (1 and 2). If it lands on tails, then the middle hatchling will be in a trio with the last two hatchlings (4 and 5).

2. Whether the trio goes first or the duo and the coach go first depends on which group the middle hatchling ended up in. If the coin landed on heads, then the trio goes first; if it landed on tails, then the duo goes first. Either way, the group with the first two hatchlings in it goes first.

3. Perform the battles in each group as follows:

  • For the trio group, take the three contenders to the Training Fields and begin a battle streak. Like with the 3-egg nest, the first fainter isn't ushered out between streaks; though they will appear alive, they are disqualified upon fainting. Keep going until a second dragon faints. Set aside the survivor for now.
  • For the duo group, take the two contenders (and a coach, optionally) to the Training Fields and begin a battle streak. Like with all battles that may have a coach, whether they faint or not doesn't matter. Keep going until one of the contenders faints. Set aside the survivor for now.
4. Once the two survivors in each trial have been selected, bring them (and the coach from the duo group, if applicable) to the Training Fields once more. Begin your final battle streak and keep going until one of the contenders faints. The other one is the sole survivor and will carry on the legacy.
Optional Rules wrote: All from Nothing: Instead of having a ten-generation limit, your Legacy of War lives on until you have bred a dragon with a rare breed (Coatl or Wildclaw) and triple gem genes who can trace their lineage back to your triple-Basic and plentiful founder. If you use this optional rule, I suggest also using The Chosen One optional rule.

The Chosen One: If you bought a mate that has a rare breed (Coatl or Wildclaw) and/or any number of gem genes, it's unlikely that those traits will pass down even if your current heir has a limited breed or gene in their corresponding slots. If such a dragon is born against all odds, they are declared "the chosen one" for that generation and are automatically made heir, regardless of whether or not you prefer their siblings (for any reason) over them.

  • If, through a miracle of the RNG, you end up with multiple dragons in a generation that could be qualified as chosen ones, then the one with more upgrades of this kind will win automatically. If they have the same number of upgrades of this kind, then they must fight it out the way traditional heirs would, but only between other chosen ones. Dragons that aren't chosen ones are still disqualified from being heir for that generation.
I realise it's a fair bit to take in, but it'll make more sense as I make progress. Possibly. Maybe. Hopefully. I have no idea. On to my founders! Rabi the Guardian, my triple-basic plentiful G1 and Saba the extremely reluctant Spiral, who only cost 7k.
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Saba is 2 days off being RTB so the first update will be very soon as we see how many eggs they have! I don't know yet what my final goal will be; Sab's is a Primal rare dragon with gem genes and Stormcatcher's official colours. I considered the same except with Windsinger but while I'd like this to last I also want reasonable expectations :lol:

Varethyn
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Re: Legacy of War - Vare's Breeding Challenge

Unread post by Varethyn » Sun Sep 08, 2019 7:31 am

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It begins, and with a lovely nest of 3. In 5 days' time they will be vying for their parents' approval and Windsinger's blessing to continue the lineage while their siblings are conscripted into the war effort.

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Re: Legacy of War - Vare's Breeding Challenge

Unread post by Varethyn » Fri Sep 13, 2019 5:07 am

The hatchlings are here! And what can I say except what

the

heck

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That Spiral's going to be the first to go down knowing my luck :lol: Wow.

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Re: Legacy of War - Vare's Breeding Challenge

Unread post by Varethyn » Thu Sep 19, 2019 9:37 am

Today was finally the day. Saba had been sulking the entire time since the Windsinger Himself had descended to make His opinions of her very clear. Being chewed out by her own Deity, being forced to mate and nest with that infuriatingly dopey Guardian, Rabi and having to raise his children. Children that should have been perfect like her, in all of her reflection of their beloved god. Not so beloved on her part after this.

Saba had only done her part begrudgingly. After all, she wouldn't go so low as to simply abandon the hatchlings. That would make things even worse for her as the rumours spread like wildfire on the ever-travelling winds, her story passed to ear to ear, by dragon to dragon until all of her clan and many beyond snickered and pointed where they once stared in awe of her perfect reflection. All reputation soiled by the recent divine intervention the last thing the Spiral wanted was to be brought own further by proving herself a monster. Even so Saba had left most of the work and care to Rabi as she hid away to think over everything that had happened, only checking on the eggs out of curiosity, to see if the bumbling Guardian was even capable of doing so without breaking the precious things.

As it turned out he had shown to be a wonderful father, brooding where she did not, licking and turning the eggs to keep them clean and warm all over. For a brief moment each time she saw this spectacle Saba would feel a prick of guilt in her chest, one that grew harsher each time and was now all but stabbing her heart as she realised that she had, in her own, distant way, bonded with the unborn creatures. And soon, in a matter of short years, the young dragons would grow up learning to fight and defend until they were pitted against one another to see which of them would join the Windsinger's army and which one would be allowed to stay and raise their own family. Only for the cycle to repeat until the Wind god was finally satisfied with her.

Those years came and went very quickly. Saba's heart had soared higher than any bird or dragon ever could when she saw the cloud-pattered Spiral fall from her egg. Chances that any of them would be Spirals like herself were low, as were those of gaining her patterns. So to find one of her children had inherited everything from her was a miracle. Saba had instantly taken the tiny noodle into her own care, leaving Rabi to tend to the patternless Guardians who had fallen from the other two eggs. Yes, this daughter was perfect and would be raised to be perfect. She would be the one to continue their lineage. Guardians were already so much physically stronger, it only made sense they'd be the ones to serve.

And then the day of reckoning came all too soon. Two Guardians, playful in their nature as they bounced and teased and play-fought with each other the entire way from the den to the judgement site and one uppity clouded Spiral who looked down on her larger siblings with distaste. Mother had told her those two were failures, far from what their family could offer and that she, Miu, would be the one to put them in their place.

"So what do you think we'll be doing?" asked Lokesh, the beautifully green but otherwise boring male Guardian asked with wide, wondrous eyes. "Mum and dad said we get to fight. But what are we fighting?"

"Maybe we're being sent out to spy on those beastclans!" Replied his orange-scaled sister Tarquis, who had taken a lot after their bright-hided father. "Maybe we need to cause a distraction while the adults attack them!"

Miu snorted as she floated lazily overhead. "Or we'll be dumped in the arena to fight against other dragons."

"Well that's not as fun." Tarquis groused, fins drooping in a disappointment yet to come. "We know everyone here. Why would they fight us?"

Lokesh stopped then, bowing down in his front legs with his long tail lashing. "To see which of us is stronger, duh!" To emphasise the statement the olive-coloured Guardian pounced on his sunshine sister, sending both of them tumbling and laughing as they rolled down the grassy hill that lead to their destination. Miu simply rolled her large eyes as she followed a lot more subdued.

As the three entered the grand arena used for head-to-head training against each other or against captured beasts and beastclans they fell silent, excitement replaced by uncertainty, disinterest replaced by nervousness. There were a lot of dragons perched in the viewing gallery that circled the coliseum. A lot. "It's like the whole clan came here to see what we're doing." Tarquis muttered, previous gusto fleeing with every step she took.

"Whatever it is must be taking place here." Miu murmured in reply, twisting down level with her larger siblings as the sudden desire for comfort overcame her sinuous body.

As they crept fearfully out of the tunnel in full the entirety of the arena came into view. A roar of cheers and jeers and cries of support and leers of insult. Ahead of them in the main box sat their parents; Rabi beaming proudly down at them all, Saba watching her Spiral daughter with stern expectation. Behind them though was a sight unexpected indeed: the Windsinger himself had come to spectate, a wide, amused grin gracing His features.

"My children," Saba announced, though she kept her gaze only on Miu, "no doubt you are all wondering why you are here." All three bobbed their heads in unison as they cowered under the eyes of hundreds of dragons and their Deity. "As you have all been taught these past years you are to prove your worth, our worth, to our lord and creator the Windsinger." Behind her the great Spiral-like Deity waved playfully. "What we neglected to tell you was your objective."

A ripple of chattering washed through the crowd as they awaited the outcome. "Our decision is one of great pride and deep regret." The trio was stunned to hear the words rumbled by their father this time, Rabi receiving a piercing glare from his mate. Presumably she did not want him to join in with this, having snapped her long jaws shut as he spoke first. "It was finally decided that in order for you to show your worth you must fight..." he trailed off momentarily, lowering his great head. Just as Saba was about to jump in to finish the sentence Rabi continued with a strength that belied his worry, "one another."

Tarquis, Lokesh and Miu froze, exchanging looks of utter disbelief. They had been trained to fight, but not themselves! Up in the gallery someone yelled, "We all know Miu's going to win! Saba will have rigged it somehow, that's why she didn't tell them!" An uproar started as dragons began to argue and complain, shouting over one another in a bid to be heard. Saba turned barely enough to shoot the Windsinger an accusing glower. You did this to me. The Wind god simply smirked in response before raising up on His front legs to make Himself more visible.

"SILENCE." The clamouring stopped almost immediately at the Deity's bellow. Once everyone had quieted He too settled back down. Waving an arm He simply said, "Continue."

The silence continued as everyone stared down at the waiting trio. "Remember," Saba's voice rang out at length, "there is a place for each of you within our great Deity's ranks. Show us all now what you are capable of!" All three gulped, giving one another a final, terrified look as they split off to separate sides of the arena floor. Once they'd taken up position Saba cried, "Begin!"

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Three adolescent dragons enter the Training Fields together. For a good long time they survived with little worry as their levelling up restored their health. They all reached lv3 before the first casualty happened.

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Yup, as expected. Upgrades denied.

Then the second casualty followed in the same fight.

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That means Tarquis is the winner!

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Humorously I found this boy at the top end of my allowance of 20k, baring the exact same colours as Saba and the Windsinger. I had to check to make sure he wasn't related to Saba, which he thankfully isn't.
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So I've decided my ultimate goal will be similar to that of the person who inspired me to do this challenge: full gem genes with Windsinger's official colours (seafoam/spring/aqua) with primal eyes. I want this to last a while so why not aim higher, right?

With the challenge full underway Rabi, Saba, Lokesh and Miu are available for adoption or else will be exalted by the time Tarquis and her mate are ready to breed!
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Re: Legacy of War - Vare's Breeding Challenge

Unread post by Tårnfalk » Thu Sep 19, 2019 10:10 am

uhhh I like this challenge!! Hard but seems fun :D

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HUGE thanks to Makoes, Syleye, FeralClaw, Pingupuff, Karin,Bowno, Varethyn, Ashaine, Kishay, Aki (Täräin13), my friend Marie and some lovely ppl on Fligth Rising for my lovely sig

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Re: Legacy of War - Vare's Breeding Challenge

Unread post by Krysteena » Thu Sep 19, 2019 2:07 pm

I was gonna do one of these but I couldn't bring myself to write characters knowing I was going to kill them bc I'm a baby when it comes to that :lol: got too much lore to get on with anywho!

Definitely going to be keeping an eye on this as well as your pinkerlockes, too! You've got some high aspirations with primal being on the list, but you've got this! :D

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Re: Legacy of War - Vare's Breeding Challenge

Unread post by Varethyn » Wed Nov 13, 2019 7:28 pm

Saba had vanished.

Whether in shame or disappointment no one knew. None of the coliseum attendants knew. No one in the clan knew. No one in the neighbouring clan knew. The Spiral had simply gone, left without a word or trace. Gossip and rumours sprung up about her contract with the Windsinger but nothing was certain. After all, why would He visit any of them for any reason other than as recruits for the war? Saba certainly wasn't picked, though two of her offspring had been.

Which troubled Tarquis greatly.

To fight in the coliseum is an honour and the winner granted boons aplenty. Yet... what had she won exactly? Freedom? Was that the reason Lokesh and Miu had to be conscripted into the army and not herself? Wasn't that supposed to be the greatest honour a dragon would know? So how was it that by winning the sun-scaled Guardian had been denied that honour?

Worst of all, since their mother's disappearance their father Rabi had fallen into a state of deep lethargy, refusing to stand or eat or drink or care for himself in any way. As far as he was concerned he'd lost his Charge. And what was a Guardian without a Charge?

For the time they were allowed all three siblings helped tend to their listless father, hoping to rouse him. By the time Lokesh and Miu were forced to leave Rabi's condition had only worsened, possibly because they had to go.

Tarquis heaved a sigh as she flopped onto the dusky plains, turning her attention towards an orange-and-purple-streaked sky as twilight began to set in. Closing her eyes and slowing her breath despite a neck and chest tightened by despair the green-winged dragon whispered, “What is the point of all this?” Then she waited, listening.

She'd repeated this ritual every evening since her brother and sister left for their new destiny as aides to the Windsinger, hoping for some kind of answer. Those dragons like her who were born into Wind-blessed territory had the unique ability to hear voices upon the breezes. If someone somewhere spoke directly into a gust of air it would be carried to the ears of those Wind dragons who would pick them out. On rare occasions it was possible to hear even the Windsinger's voice as He crowed and laughed at His work above the clouds.

That was what Tarquis hoped, longed to hear.

And every time all she got was more laughter.

A tear rolled down her cheek as the Guardian rose to return inside the den, ready Rabi for bed and then retire herself. This could not keep going this way. She could feel the pull; soon she would have no choice but to leave on her Search to find her own Charge. What then? What of her father should his last child also be made to abandon him?

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It may not have been the Windsinger answering her but an answer came nonetheless. A male Spiral like her mother and sister, her mother more so by the colour of his scales, came to visit, attracted by Tarquis' calls for help.

“I do hope I'm not intruding.” Ishikk, as he'd introduced himself as, said somewhat sheepishly even as he worked around the fallen Rabi. “I've seen things like this before. My mother is a medic and taught me some things. I don't know if I'll be able to help him but I can at least make him comfortable.” Wringing his spindly green hands he added, “If you'd like me to, I mean.”

“I could use all the help I can get.” Was Tarquis' reply.

And that was that. Ishikk all but moved in to offer support, both physical and moral, until the day Rabi gave up and passed on. Tarquis mourned for days after his burial, though when the Spiral offered to leave she asked he stay. His presence after losing everyone else close to her brought the sunshine Guardian comfort. In truth he had also begun to fall for her with her caring, sensitive nature.

And so it was not a few months later that Tarquis and Ishikk became mates, watching proudly over a cluster of spiral-patterned eggs.

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Varethyn
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Re: Legacy of War - Vare's Breeding Challenge

Unread post by Varethyn » Sun Nov 24, 2019 5:50 pm

It was a particularly pleasant day on the Windswept Plateau. Songbirds chirruped happily from the branches, the grass was alive with colourful blooms of many varieties blown in from all across Sornieth and the sun cast a gentle, warm glow that seemed to lift the spirits of all that stood within it. Traders flew or walked in to barter, hawking their wares in hopes for something of equal return. The shouts and calls of many travellers filled the air as Tarquis and Ishikk wound their way through the marketplace with their three little ones in tow, coiling and bounding gleefully behind their parents. Whenever they stopped the tiny trio would pounce on one another, rolling around amidst the much larger adult dragons' legs. Carla and Orin would torment their bigger sister, Nasus, by winding their sinuous, snakelike bodies around her limbs, her neck, her horns as she did her best to buck them off.

It had been months since Rabi's passing and the small family was thriving. And yet, as they picked their way from stall to wagon to tent Tarquis could not help but glance around now and again. She'd caught something on the wind that morning. Something unsettling. Someone was seeking her out. All questions as to who or why went unanswered and so the Guardian was left on edge, checking for signs of another who would do her or her family harm.

"You're not still looking for your stalker are you?"

Her thoughts were broken by her serpentine mate, the Spiral who had did his utmost to save her father and who stayed with her in her moment of need when he'd passed. Ishikk's large eyes were round with worry, worry for her more than who or what may be lurking nearby. "I can't help it." Tarquis mumbled in reply, handing over a much larger sum of treasure to the merchant than was required for the food she'd purchased for him, the greedy dragon pocketing it all quickly and waving at the family as they left. "Mother was not best pleased after my siblings and I were made to fight one another in the coliseum." The great brow creased as she frowned. "I still don't understand why. But I get the most horrible feeling it might be her."

"That your mother might be looking to set whatever went wrong that day right?" Trying to piece the puzzle together the Spiral twisted in tight corkscrews as he ran through the scenario Tarquis had told him. Of how she and her brother and sister had to fight. How Saba had abandoned them when her chosen daughter, Miu, failed. How Windsinger Himself had claimed the two for His campaign. "Honestly I don't think you should worry about it all." He said at length, loosening his twirls to drape himself around his mate's neck, head hanging level with her eyes. "It could mean anything when you think about it. Anything could be following us right now. Heck, it could just mean those three!" A thin thumb jutted towards the children, Orin hanging limply from Nasus' jaws with only a hand dramatically placed against his head giving away that he yet lived, the Guardian beaming proudly at her "kill" as Carla giggled and prodded her prone brother. "They're trouble enough on their own!"

Tarquis managed an amused snort but concern still clouded her orange features. The conversation was left at that, any further small talk replaced by other topics as they made their way out of the marketplace to fly home. As the parents began ushering three reluctant hatchlings to climb onto their mother's back a strong gust of wind blew past, sending the trees into a frenzy and sending ripples through the emerald grass. Tarquis braced herself against the buffeting gale, using her body to shield her family. This was no ordinary wind. No, the suddenness, the power behind it and the direction it had come from could only have been caused by Wind magic. Greatly alert the sunshine-scaled dragon shook her young from her back to stand protectively over them, arguing with Ishikk to hide under her as well.

"You shouldn't be here." A familiar voice, full of venom, hissed. Growling, Tarquis lowered herself closer to her family, wings flared, tail lashing. "You should be off serving Him while my treasure prospered." Another blast of air, aimed specifically to catch the Guardian under her splayed wings, almost sent them all tumbling.

"What did I do wrong, mother?!" She yelled once she'd found her footing again. "I did as I was told and won! What more could I-" A third buffeting gust cut her off. This time Tarquis was ready, lowering her wings to instead use them as a shield to repel the worst of the attack. Then there was a cry beneath her belly and she was forced to circle around to check on the children. Carla was wrapped tightly about Nasus' body with Ishikk hovering next to them, a wild look in his large eyes as he stared after a departing shape in the grass. Before the Guardian could register it the Spiral had darted after them.

Saba had taken Orin while she had been distracted by the magic.

"Bring him back!" Nasus screeched as she, with a bravery born from fear than judgement, threw her spindly sister from her neck and charged after her father.

"Ishikk! Nasus! Don't!" Gathering up a rather bewildered Carla into one of her massive paws Tarquis barrelled after the others. Her larger size and wide gait would see her catch up with ease, though her pursuit was unstable as she was pelted with gust after gale of Wind magic from her spiteful mother. Why do this to her? Why steal her own children? What had she done wrong? An angered shriek to the right confirmed their location. Swerving around and almost losing her balance Tarquis shoved her snout into a patch of writhing long grass to find the piebald Spiral being entwined by Ishikk and Orin as Nasus pinned her down.

"This was supposed to be my legacy!" Saba spat, sending blasts of air in random directions in hopes of knocking her attackers away. "I was supposed to be perfect! I was supposed to raise the perfect brood! We were supposed to be like gods!" Her voice peaked and broke, warbling as she struggled to break free. "But then He had to go and ruin it! He Himself! Windsinger be damned!"

Another gust of wind eddied about the group then, though this time not by Saba's hand. It coiled around them like a snake as a faint laughter filled the air around them. "Tsk tsk tsk. This is why I intervened." The winds coalesced into a serpentine shape many, many times larger than the biggest Spiral as the Windsinger took form to lay lazily on the ground, head in His hand as He regarded the family. "To claim oneself to be at my level. How truly foolish you are." Saba shrieked again but Windsinger continued before her gibberish became coherent, "So I showed you how your so called "legacy" could be "perfect" in another way. As it quite perfect timing in that I require more aspiring artists to join me up in the clouds."

"Your head is in the clouds!" The high-strung Spiral wailed in retort. "You are a monster! What deity steals my children, my children's children and their children onward to show how imperfect I am?!"

All colour drained from Tarquis' face. "'Children's children'...?" she echoed as she stared in disbelief at Saba, motioning for her children to come to her as she slowly turned pleadingly up at the Wind god. "No... please..."

"Ah of course. Of course one like Saba would not do her brood kindness by telling them the truth now would she?" Windsinger beamed mockingly down at them all. "Do you want to tell them or shall I?"

"SHADE TAKE YOU!"

"Well then." Unaffected by Saba's insults Windsinger turned His attention to the small family, Ishikk having also let Saba go in favour of protecting his hatchlings. "We made a deal, little Saba and I. For all her impertinence and pretending to be my equal I would pick all but one from her next clutch: you and your siblings. Miu and Lokesh are doing very well by the by. I could even say they're enjoying their new positions." He chuckled blithely. "However, I also requested that henceforth I would do the same for every generation of her kin. That is to say, I'm here to choose from your litter dear Tarquis."

The Guardian could only stare in sheer horror at her mother as she lay in the grass, glaring at everyone who looked her way. "My... children... because of... because of her actions?" A tear slid down her cheek. "Am I to be punished for my mother's selfish claims? And my childre- the lone child you're to leave me with as you spirit the others away?" Tears flowed freely as she stooped, gathering Orin, Nasus, Carla and Ishikk to her chest. "No! I don't understand! I don't understand!"

"It is as it must be." The Deity of Wind's voice was gentle and caring as he ran a long finger under Tarquis' chin, not at all the demands she'd expected. "It is not yet time as they need to grow first. But see this not as a curse but a blessing. It is not all fighting as many would believe. And many do believe that. No no, they will enjoy life with me. They will find their true calling and prosper. As I said, your siblings are quite content." He offered a kind smile as He rose to full height. With a quickness only He could muster the great wyrm snatched up the hissing, writhing Saba as He began to vanish into the winds. "I am sorry to cause you pain, but so has it been said, so it must be. When they come of age I ask your Nasus and Orin seek me out at the Cloudsong. From there their life begins anew." The last few words were barely wisps as Windsinger dissipated into the air once more, a soft wind caressing the family in His wake.

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The hatchlings: Carla, Nasus and Orin
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Orin was first to fall to an unfortunate crit
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Followed a little later by Nasus who got focused down
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Carla is the winner and will go on to have her own brood! This means I got both a breed upgrade and a gene upgrade! I also already found her a mate in Zayin:
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Though it was difficult as the only other on in the criteria was related to her, forcing me to open up the colour search more than I'd like. He's also another Spiral so there's no chance for a breed upgrade this time around. Still he's fully gened, but in future I may take time to look for appropriate mates as, as you may imagine, most dragons with Windsinger's colour palette are Spirals :lol:

Varethyn
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Re: Legacy of War - Vare's Breeding Challenge

Unread post by Varethyn » Fri Dec 20, 2019 10:21 pm

No one was entirely sure if they ever recovered from the ordeal. Being attacked by Tarquis' own mother out of sheer spite then have her spirited away by the Wind deity Himself left them all quite shaken. What was for certain was that Nasus and Orin had been marked to join His army once they came of age. An age that was now rapidly approaching. To make it worse, Tarquis would not be there to see them go.

She'd fought off the urge to begin her Search in favour of raising a family for too long; now it was almost unbearable. Despite every effort the wanderlust overtook her time and time again with some days seeing her missing for hours until she could reign her Guardian instincts in. Seeing this and fearing one day his mate would unintentionally not return Ishikk pleaded Tarquis that she simply go. It would be painful for all of them but he promised to care for the children until they were ready and to stay with Carla as long as she needed him.

It was with tears that the orange Guardian said her final farewells, promising to visit one day should whatever her Charge be allow it. It was with tears only months later that Nasus and Orin left to join Windsinger's ranks. It was with tears that Carla spent most of her days, the pressure of her family's curse weighing heavily on her spindly shoulders. Her father upheld his promise, watching over her. But the Spiral was skittish, fleeing from anything and anyone, not wanting to deal with the outside world for long.

So then it must have been a miracle that Zayin found them. Out of desperation Ishikk had called into the winds for other dragons to come spend time with his daughter, hoping that by mingling with others in a safe place Carla would open up more. Some meetings went well, others not. Some were exceptional, a few catastrophic. Each time she enjoyed herself Carla would anticipate the next. Each time it went wrong she would lock herself in her room for weeks, refusing to see anyone.

Then Zayin arrived. During another support group session shortly after the last time Carla had hidden away the blue Spiral had joined for the first time and it was clear there was some connection. He came each session and even in those that went downhill Carla retained some confidence when he was around. She started asking about him outside of the meetings, wondering what he did otherwise. One session she ended up going home with him. And the next. And the week following the next.

With a smile on his lips Ishikk called into the winds once more, hoping that out there, somewhere, Tarquis would hear him. With feeling he retold the story of Carla's progress, his heart swelling with pride. It all but burst when his daughter returned with a clutch of three healthy eggs. A celebration was held. A small one of course but a celebration none the less. However, once the festivities had ended and everyone retired to their dens for the night that swollen heart dropped like a rock into the pit of Ishikk's stomach as realisation struck him.

He needed to remind Carla that she would have to give up two of those children.

It was with tears that he forced himself to unleash the memories since banished, to bring to light the future not in their control. It was with tears that Carla and Zayin tied themselves together in a large, living knot both out of frustration and attempt to placate one another.

It was with tears that Zayin had to hold his mate back as she tried to shatter the eggs to deny the Windsinger his recruits.

It was only one time, emotions running high and tempers flaring. Still both males swore to never leave Carla alone lest she go through with the deed. She never showed intent to try again. Regret stayed her hand as she regressed back into her shy, reclusive self, all but leaving Zayin to raise the eggs himself. And he did. For her. Because he knew she was breaking. With no way to know how to end the curse, the curse placed upon them because of a stuck up grandmother's over-inflated ego, all that could be done was to keep going.

Before long Ihaka, Xodin and Mithra hatched safely into their parents' loving embrace. The three were spoiled, getting all the food they wanted, going where they wanted, doing what they wanted. For years they were happy. For years they were never approached and so for years the curse was forgotten again.

Until Carla heard a voice on the winds that she had never heard before. A strong yet gentle voice. An important, airy voice. The Windsinger was making Himself known to her and that alone drove her into depression. Hiding in her den it was once more down to Zayin to watch the children as Ishikk watched Carla.

“Hey you three, come here.” It was said playfully as he beckoned his offspring over, though he wondered how he was able to stay afloat with the weight of what was to come next tugging him back down.

“Aw, but we were having fun!” Xodin drawled as the three Spirals twisted their way over to their waiting father.

Zayin chuckled. “I know and I'm sorry. But there's something very important you all need to know.” Waiting for them to be as still and patient as juvenile Spirals could be the blue dragon cleared his throat. Three heads cocked uncertainly to one side as he regarded them sadly. “It is very hard for me to say this, and harder for your mother. Soon two of you will need to leave home.”

Frowning, Mithra piped up, “What? Why? Are you kicking us out like those bullies at school said you might?”

Shaking his head Zayin sighed. “No, it's not like that. Remember what we told you about the deities and how they are always looking for dragons to fight for them?” Three horned heads nodded. “Well, our family is... a favourite of the Windsinger's.” The pang of guilt at the twisted truth made him grind his teeth. “He likes us so much that He picks from us first.”

“Because we're special?” Ihaka chirped innocently, eyes wide with wonder.

“In a sense.” Their father said, barely convincingly as he fought to keep his emotions in check. “Anyway, we can't say for sure when He'll arrive or how He'll choose. So I want us to make a game of it.” Clapping his hands together with a little too much force and startling the kids Zayin wove around the three, settling closer in a loose loop. “You all like bug hunting, right?” Three horned heads nodded eagerly, leaning in with interest. “Well, I want us to have the best dinner possible tonight to help cheer up your mother. Whoever gets the best bugs doesn't have to do chores tonight.”

Squeals of excitement rang across the Plateau as the tiny trio split off to gather what they could manage, jeering playfully at one another whenever they crossed paths. No child wanted to do chores and so they all put their utmost into their hunting.

However, bug hunting is more dangerous than it may seem. Dangers lurked in the wilds, food fought back, other dragons could forcefully claim the prize for themselves. By late afternoon Xodin arrived first, packs and arms brimming with insects, most still wriggling as he dumped them into a bowl for sorting. Mithra was next, sporting a good amount with some deliciously rare bugs thrown into the mix, but it was clear she'd gotten into a scuffle. It took her a lot of coaxing to finally admit she'd stumbled into a bumble nest, nasty welts beginning to show as stings swelled into itchy lumps beneath her scales.

It was almost evening when Ihaka finally made it back, with little to show for his efforts. He began wailing during his explanation, that he'd hit the insect motherload only for it to be on another dragon's property. He'd have had the best haul yet except the stingy dragon beat him harshly for stealing and took back what was theirs.

Pursing his lips Zayin decided that none of them needed to do chores after all they'd been through. All of them, Carla and Ishikk included, gorged on the collection Xodin and Mithra had brought back, even managing to get a smile out of their mother. Zayin was pleased with how it turned out despite needing to rub cream on his daughter's back to ease the stings and Ihaka was always too ready to take from others; it was about time he learned. All in all they had fun one way or another and enjoyed a great meal together. It had been a good day.

However, later that night he and Carla were awoken by that voice again, sending Carla back into tears. It seemed the game hadn't gone unnoticed. Once they were old enough Ihaka and Mithra would have to leave.

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Carla and Zayin's hatchlings: Ihaka, Xodin and Mithra

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Mithra was first to go down fairly early

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Then the boys held out for ages until Ihaka finally got crit

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I am so stoked Xodin won, as now I have a fully gened heir! Next focus now is breed, which is a possibility given the mate I got for him

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An imp and with close colours to the goal. I just hope she's able to pull Xodin's closer together for the hatchlings.

Ihaka and Mithra are available for adoption if anyone's interested, since Mithra is a double. I likely won't hold onto them for long so if you're interested please let me know!

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Re: Legacy of War - Vare's Breeding Challenge

Unread post by LupisDarkmoon » Sat Dec 21, 2019 9:51 pm

Great chapter, I loved the way you integrated in the coli fights via bug gathering misshaps- and HECK YEAH triple gene heir!!

Tumblr ~ Flight Rising
Signature by Crookfish, thank you so much!

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Varethyn
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Re: Legacy of War - Vare's Breeding Challenge

Unread post by Varethyn » Thu Jan 30, 2020 11:33 am

An Imperial! Of all dragons he could have met he'd landed himself an Imperial. Not just friends. Mates. Xodin smiled sweetly down at the two eggs that lay in the nesting room of the new den he shared with Xanna, reminiscing over the series of events that had let him here.

It had been another ordinary day. He and his parents had made their way down to the market for some retail therapy; a distraction for both Xodin and his anxious mother after his siblings had received letters of invitation to join Windsinger's own exalted army, to aid in the Wind deity's grand venture. Whatever that may be. It was meant to be the greatest honour, yet his parents seemed more heartbroken about it than the Spiral did. Not that he wasn't sad, just that they'd felt the impact more somehow. It was to do with his mother's family being "cursed" to give up all but one child to the growing army, he guessed. A weird way to phrase it when it was supposed to be the best thing that could ever happen to a dragon. Still Xodin had respected his parents' loss and had helped wherever he could.

In fact, this trip was Xodin's idea. Mother had spent far too much time hiding in her room and father fretting over it so he decided to bring them both out for a while. It took time to convince his mother to leave the safety of her den but in the end they managed. It was good to see her smile again. She hadn't smiled since Ihaka and Mithra's departure. Now she was cooing over all the glittery jewellery on display while father helped her try it on, complimenting every fit. Xodin smiled in kind but wasn't interested in the sparkly stuff. Excusing himself to look around further on he found he had hit a wall. Both figuratively and physically. In truth the Spiral didn't know what he really wanted. After all, the wares sold by the merchants that made up the markets often rotated their stock. They had enough food, enough clothes, enough... well, everything. Except happiness. Mother and father were enamoured by the jewellery but Xodin wanted something more to cheer them up.

He hadn't expected it to be the physical wall he'd struck. Rather, the leg of an impossibly (to him) beautiful young Imperial girl. They'd laughed it off and went their own ways, only to bump - almost literally - into one another in a different aisle. Again they laughed, again they split... again they found themselves together. She'd blushed. He'd coughed, fidgeting. This had to be coincidence, right? Yet something about the pattern made them both decide to hang out together lest they be doomed to repeat the humorously awkward cycle. Then they'd found his parents browsing the stalls further down from the jeweller's. Xanna, as she introduced herself as, admitted to be smitten with the Spiral, Xodin in turn twisting up in embarrassment as both parents started jumping to conclusions. Not, he noticed, sadly however. He'd expected his mother to break down should he find himself a partner and move out-

Listen to him! Even he was jumping towards a future that might not happen.

That's what he'd thought then, shaking his head as he wrapped his serpentine self around the eggs. His eggs. His and Xanna's eggs.

It started off as a friendship. They'd exchanged den locations and gone home, then would take days to visit each other. One time his place, the next hers. Then they started spending longer together, finding every possible excuse to visit on more days. Then nights. Then weeks.

The rest, as they say, is history.

A great warmth enveloped him then, bringing Xodin out of his musings as he lifted his head to nuzzle his mate's muzzle. It was a good thing there was a magical alternative to make these eggs. A physical connection simply would not work for their impressive size difference so a mage had been called on to combine their essences into new life. A lengthy, risky process but one highly sought after between mates who could not produce offspring naturally. The spell had gone without a hitch, as the two healthy eggs proved.

A sudden, sharp but not grating sound snatched the attention of both parents then. Maws splitting wide in excited smiles the two pulled apart to allow the eggs space. They were hatching! It had already been obvious from their size that they'd both be Spirals like he was. He didn't mind, he was just happy to have his own world and the blessing of his mother, who still visited now and again with his father. She'd looked so good then, how would she glow if she saw this moment?

A melodic tinkling here. A soft crackling there. Jagged lines followed the swirling patterns. A kick. A headbutt. Chimes and small puffs of air filled the room as the hatchlings fought their way out. Then the jingling of a wind-chime as one shattered completely, revealing the exhausted contents laying amongst the rubble of her broken shell. Xanna had moved quickly, scooping the green noodle delicately into a paw to lick away the remaining goop as her daughter squirmed and squeaked. Then another musical explosion as the second egg split, the second hatchling having somehow turned himself upside down and now comically waved his feet and tail outside while his head and body remained stuck inside. A few chirrups of frustration later and he'd righted himself, peeping piteously.

"Welcome to the world, little dears." Xanna whispered as both parents each took a spindly child each to clean and comfort. Not long after a warm breeze wafted through, caressing them both.

Xodin froze. Their lair was dug so that such a breeze could not reach them so strongly in this room. He felt it wrap around him a few times, lightly jostling his mate's mane and otherwise ignoring her and her charge. Windsinger had spoken. A greeting and a request.

Little Sengar was to be taken into the deity's ranks once he'd come of age.

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Phew, it's not easy to do a challenge like this when waiting on an Imperial to be RTB. It's gonna be fun when I finally get to Wildclaw/Coatl stage!

Xodin and Xanna had two Spirals, a girl named Leto and a boy named Sengar.

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They grew up today and went into the Training Grounds with their mother as "coach" to fill the team. Two fights later Sengar went down. To be fair I'd not been given very nice starting groups, being a flock of webwings followed by two bulky pocketmice. Leto is my new heir! I'm not sure how much of an upgrade her genes are but there's potential for a jump with her new mate, Soren:

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If anyone wants to adopt Xodin, Xanna or Sengar let me know! I will be exalting them by Sunday.
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Re: Legacy of War - Vare's Breeding Challenge

Unread post by Varethyn » Sat Feb 29, 2020 11:47 am

Merwin was jealous. Hefting a sigh the shamrock-scaled Bogsneak watched as her parents coddled her smaller Spiral siblings. Twins. Well, not -quite- twins but close enough. Hide and wing both shared the exact same hue as one another even if their stripes were slightly different shades of blue. Didn't stop her parents from being excited about them.

First she got all the attention, being a Bogsneak among Spirals. Not perhaps a miracle of a birth such like a Wildclaw from a Fae but nonetheless uncommon and celebrated as thus. Then they noticed how similar the noodles were, gushing over the odds of them being so close while Merwin was so much darker of body despite sharing the same wings. Even when it came to explain how their mother, Leto, had met their father, Soren, it was clear the tale was being told more to them than her. Even though she was bigger, so much bigger, it was clear to her that she meant little to the proud parents.

She'd show them. She'd show all of them.

One particularly gusty day Merwin confronted her brother and sister. They'd all been let out to play outside with instruction to stay close due to the gales forming. Leto and Soren had waved to Trine and Tyrith as they wound their way out, moving away when it was her turn to slip outside. They didn't ignore her, bidding her safe play and smiling, but didn't give her the same attention. Merwin had simply flicked her tongue out as the pair disappeared deeper in the den, stomped over to the twins and shouted, "Okay you two!" It was loud enough to spook the seafoam Spirals out of tussling and face her. Her size helped a lot with intimidating them into listening. "I'm so tired of watching you two get more than me jus' 'cos we're not all the same colours."

"B-but we p-pretty much get the same since you're so much bigger..." Trine babbled in attempt to even things out. After all, Bogsneaks needed more food than a Spiral. It was only fair the Spirals got extra to make up for it.

"Not just food!" Merwin yelled, stamping a foot. "Toys, time with mum an' dad, your room. All 'cos you look the same!" Lowering her long neck the Bogsneak glared at eye-level to her siblings. "So I'm challengin' you. We're goin' out and gettin' food for dinner tonight. If you two get more or better stuff than me I'll leave you alone. But if I get more or better then you gotta share."

Tapping spindly fingers together Trine mumbled, "We'd share if you asked..."

However she was drowned out by her brother as he proclaimed, "Deal! Sounds like fun!"

"Wait!" Two sets of green eyes fell on Trine again as she wriggled uncertainly. "It's far too windy today. Tyrith and I will just get blown away."

"That's the point." Merwin snapped, thick tail clubbing the grass behind her. "Now's the bes' time to do it!"

"Mum said to-"

"Stay close, yeah but there ain't much right outside now is there?" Twisting around to put her back to them the Bogsneak made deliberate motion to show she was seriously leaving. "Even if you don't I'm still goin'. I'm gonna get a lot of the bes' stuff for mum an' dad an' you'll see." As she stormed off the one thing her tin siblings failed to notice were the tears trickling over her cheeks. Angrily scrubbing them away Merwin narrowed her eyes against the blustering winds as she fought her way to the nearby hunting grounds. Spirals and Bogsneaks both ate meat which made things simpler for the mixed family. A snort escaped her nostrils, carried away in the breeze as Trine and Tyrith caught up with her.

Winding his way up in front her brother had to raise his voice a fair amount to be heard. "That's not fair! Charging off on your own!"

"Find your own patch!" Merwin retaliated, ducking her head to make herself more streamlined. If there was anything to be grateful for in being born into a Spiral family it was that she was skinnier and sleeker than most of her species. Even her father looked more like a Snapper in comparison. It helped her cut through the wind as she navigated the slopes leading to the grounds. And then past them.

"H-hey, where are you going?" Trine's terrified voice shouted into Merwin's ear, the Spiral having hooked herself around her sister's wing to stop from being buffeted. "The hunting grounds are right-"

"I know! We're not going there." Another snort. "I'm not going there. You two can get off an' kill some deer or somethin', I'm goin' to find somethin' good."

Trine whimpered as she slid off her perch to join her brother, hovering in the relative shelter of a broad tree. "You don't think she's going to the river, do you?"

Tyrith stared after their departing sister, worry crossing his pointed face. "Looks like it." He swivelled to look at her, large eyes widening yet further in realisation. "Pohip! She wants to get a pohip calf for dinner!"

"What?!" Pale blue-green hands shot to her mouth as the female Spiral lashed her tail in fright. "Th-that's... that's... She'll get hurt! No lone dragon can take on a pohip!"

"That's why we're going with her." Before Trine could complain Tyrith shot out after Merwin, got caught in the wind, struggled to push onward. Soon enough his sister joined him as they wiggled and wound their way downhill to the river. A roar echoed up from the valley, the unmistakable cry of a furious pohip, spurring the twins on. They were near exhausted from the journey by the time they finally caught up, only to stare in horror as their Bogsneak sister goaded a particularly large pohip away from her defenceless calf.

"Winnie, stop!" Trine pleaded as soon as she found her voice. "We'll share! You can play with us in our room! We'll all tell stories with mum and dad. This is dangerous!"

"I'm not doin' this for us!" Merwin yelled back, swiping a broad paw at the large, angry beast looming over her. "I'm doin' this for me! I'm gonna prove I'm just as good as you!"

"You already are!" Tyrith protested. Whether Merwin had heard him was unclear as she braced herself against a heavy slam. If there was anything Merwin was good at it was taking a blow like that. What she couldn't do, however, was dish out the same kind of damage. It was a case of the Unstoppable Force meeting the Immovable Object as the Bogsneak and pohip clashed on the banks while the frightened calf dithered in the water, uncertain whether to escape danger or stay with its mother.

Further argument went unheard or unheeded as the Bogsneak continued to harass the pohip, intending on either downing it or scaring it away. Whichever came first. The Spirals hung back, unsure how to break up the confrontation. Should they fight as well? Should they get help? Should they gather the calf while the mother was distracted? Each option was interrupted in turn as further blasts of wind howled through the valley, threatening to carry them downriver far away from the clan. No, they were at too much risk to do anything. That also meant they couldn't leave, stuck in the minuscule shelter of a large rock. Exchanging concerned glances the Spirals plotted their next move. If there was one.

Neither of them spoke further as each formulated their own plan. Trine wanted to slither through the grass back uphill to get their parents. Tyrith wanted to stop Merwin. He was first to act on it, eliciting a shriek from his sister as he rocketed out towards the Bogsneak. Not fast enough. A strong gust slammed into his spindly form, sending him sprawling. Trine was with him in seconds, neither able to hold on as they attempted to drag themselves towards their sister. "Merwin!" Trine shrieked again, her voice shrill enough to pierce the prevailing winds.

It barely reached her, Merwin only barely catching the cry for help having been forced back by a swing of the mighty head. Part of her wanted to say "good riddance". The rest of her thought better, realising the danger her smaller siblings were in. And it was her own jealousy that got them there. They weren't supposed to follow me. She mentally growled, whipping her head back and forth as she decided the bigger priority. If she left the pohip it could charge them from behind. If she left the Spirals they could get blown away to Windsinger-knows-where.

She chose family. Springing to the side as fast as her bulk would allow Merwin hunkered down in front of the Spirals, relying on her thick skin as she anticipated the next attack, claws digging into the soft ground. Vibrations shot through the three of them as the pohip raced over, snorting and tossing its head as it bore down on the Bogsneak. Merwin grunted as a flat foot stomped on her back, growled as it attempted to bite her, teeth sliding off her smooth hide. Again. Again. It kept attacking. Merwin wasn't about to let it get to the Spirals much as they annoyed her. It wasn't worth that much. Just as she felt she couldn't take any more the pohip backed off, spittle dripping from the huge lips as it turned away. Now that it had stopped the three could hear the calf pining. Its mother must have decided they were no longer a threat, preferring to comfort its child.

Whatever the case the three made their escape. When they got home it was Merwin who, reluctantly, explained what had happened. As she did so she allowed her feelings and thoughts to be known, telling her parents how she felt left out and unwanted in their spoiling the twins. By the ends she had all but broken down in tears. Trine and Tyrith took up as side each to lay hands on their larger sister, giving their sides of the story. All three were grounded for the next few days for going further than they were allowed to, but in that time the three siblings spent time together in the twins' room. They laughed, they played, they enjoyed their time together. Then once the grounding was over Tyrith declared, "Winnie, Trine and I want to be as strong as you. So... when we're all older, we're going to join the Windsinger. Join his army and stuff. We want you to be proud of us like we're proud of you."

Something stabbed Merwin's heart then. As tears ran over her face once more she gathered the Spirals together, nuzzling them as she murmured, "I already am proud to have such a wonderful brother and sister."

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While they didn't get any gem genes Leto and Soren had two Spirals and a Bogsneak: Trine, Tyrith and Merwin. Trine and Tyrith are both seafoam/peridot while Merwin is shamrock/peridot. The Spirals' similarity is what spurred this story.

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Merwin survived the trial so I have a breed upgrade! However it felt rather unfair as her Anticipate negated a lot of incoming damage. I tried to even things out by having her Shred whenever possible but even then she was the last one standing. It was a long fight however as all of them got to lv4 by the time Trine fell, Tyrith having fallen a few rounds prior.

I already have a partner for Merwin, too!

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This is Atuan. Interestingly he's already RTB. Unfortunately he's going to have to wait a fair while! It'd be great if their children manage to pick up his genes.

Leto, Soren, Trine and Tyrith are all up for grabs if anyone's interested. Otherwise they'll be exalted tomorrow.

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