The day after Christmas, and KL comes enthusiasticly bouncing down the Fury House stairs, humming something that is just recognisable as "The Holly and The ivy". She has a plastic bag, bulging with packages, in her hands. "Alesia? Anyone?" she calls. "I've finally finished wrapping my yule presents, so you can open them now."
Alesia is sitting on the couch. The fire is burning far too nicely to be the result of Alesia's work so Leslie must have been here recently. The cub is sitting with a sketch book on her lap and is drawing something with some pencils. She looks up as she hears KL and turns, "Over here." She says making sure you know where she is, "By the fire." The glass door is covered with a tapped down double layer of plastic to keep the cold out, but it's definately a temporary solution.
"Oh cool." KL says, wandering over to the cub sitting near the fire. "It's not very exciting, I'm afraid, but... I'm not very good at presents." She hands over a parcel that can only vaguely be described as "wrapped" - it's a slightly sticky mess of tape and paper. Still all of it is covered - a flat oblong about 4 inches thick and ten inches by fifteen inches to the sides.
Alesia blinks as she accepts the package. She looks at it with a little confusion then looks back up at you, "I... I didn't get anything for anyone. All I did was bake cookies... And ruin the door. I feel so bad about not being able to do more for you all. Everyone is being so nice to me. Even Kaz dropped off some pencils and stuff." She flushes just slightly, then starts to open the package very carefully.
Inside the package are a couple of books - one is a recipe book for baking and cake-making and the other is "Learn Greek The Easy Way". KL peers at the cub intently. "I hope you like them. As I said, rubbish at presents. And why did you attack the window?"
Alesia ahs softly as she realizes KL hasn't heard the story. "Um, I put... Mister Cole... /through/ the door. Um, I threw him through it." She says meekly looking down at her books, holding them suddenly tightly like she's afraid you'll take them away from her now.
"Oh." KL says. "Well, that's not so bad. It could have been someone we really liked, rather than just didn't mind." KL says with a grin. "You should have seen what i got up to when I was a cub in Denver. I tried to throw my tribal elder through a wall."
Alesia blinks and looks up at KL, clearly more than a little shocked by this response, "B... but Helen... and Leslie... were really mad?" She says, clearly utterly confused at this point.
"Not my job to be mad at you." KL says. "Not for something that must already have been dealt with." She sits herself down and shrugs. "And Leslie and Helen and I don't always agree on everything, though if we say anything that conflicts to you, take their word above mine." A little shrug. "I'm tribal junior, until you pass your rites." She shakes her head. "But, in general. Hmm. Has anyone mentioned rage to you?"
Alesia nods a bit, "Y... yes. They did. It's like the hot red stuff... that I feel inside at times. But... but this time it was cause he was reaching for me and... I saw my father... in my mind and... and Megara instantly wanted to kill him...." She pauses then adds, "I knew it wasn't my father, even though that's what I saw... I... I made her not hurt him, or... or not try to kill him but she still... um, grabbed his arm and flipped him through the door." She looks down then tries to suppress the smallest of grins, "He... looked pretty suprised." She admits. But as quickly as the grin flashes it's gone and she looks more upset, "But.. .but it was very bad and... and I felt horrible and... and I ruined my clothes and I hurt him when he was trying to be nice..."
The Ahroun nods slowly in response. "Yeah, it's usually bad to do that kind of stuff, in the long run. Well, the rage...the fury that you feel, that all Garou feel, is a blessing as well as a curse. And, though it's difficult to measure, Ahrouns like me definitely have more than Philodoxes, Theurges or Ragabashes like Helen. In general, I guess I'm likely to be more tolerant of you losing your temper, because I'm forever losing mine."
Alesia nods a bit, "It... It's strange. It's like suddenly it's not me in control anymore... like my body isn't mine... but... someone else's and I'm just watching." She hugs the books you gave her, "Thank you for the books. It means a lot to me... realy it does."
KL shrugs. "A pleasure. I may be shit at it, but I do like giving people things." She ponders. "Yes, it is a bit like that. Though it is possible to control what you're doing, and to harness it." Her brow furrows, and then she jumps up. "Got it!" she says, with enthusiasm. "Back in a second." She disappears off to the kitchen, and returns with an old coffee tin in her hand.
Alesia blinks as she watches KL run off, clearly startled by this sudden departure and equally sudden arrival. "Um, got what?" She asks as she peers at the tin.
"Tin." KL says, waving it up and down, making a slooshing noise. She tips it towards Alesia, revealing about an inch of water in the bottom. "Water." She pushes the lid back on the tin, then pitches it into the fire. "Inside the tin, the water will boil. Forms steam. The pressure inside builds. What's going to happen?"
Alesia peers at the fire then at KL like she's crazy, "Um.... the water will boil and then the lid will pop off... or if the lid is on very tightly... it'll... explode!" And with that the girl scrambles up off the sofa and puts the sofa between her and the fire like she suspects the second will be the answer or isn't taking any chances if she's right.
"Won't explode much." KL says, pushing the tin with a poker, so that it's facing away from both of them. "Not enough pressure inside to do any damage to us." She adds. "Anyway, you're right. But boiling water...producing hot steam... what's that used for?"
Alesia peers over the back of the sofa, "Um, to blow up tins?" She ventures then adds, "And for steam engines I guess?"
"Yes. Steam engines. And, in fact, most power generation things. All tools of the weaver, by the way, but the point's still the same." The Ahroun leans back, as the tin starts to wobble on the fire. "The rage inside you...inside us...is like the steam inside the tin. We can control it, use it, take the power it gives us and use it for good, or..." the tin wobbles more furiously. "We can let it build up, squish it down, and then, when ever it gets the opportunity, it will..." *BANG*. The lid of the tin is fired out, hits the fire surround with a clang and rattles to the floor. "That happens."
Alesia cringes at the bang, but then quickly peeks back over the sofa and then looks at KL, "But... but how do you let it out without... hurting people you shouldn't hurt? I don't exactly have a lot of people around me to attack who are bad right now." She says softly, "Where... where should I direct it?"
"Well, that's where the analogy falls down a little bit, because it's not so much a question of letting it out as...hmm... do you know what a pressure valve does? It lets out extra steam to keep a boiler safe." KL explains. "For me, I exercise. It does me good, and it takes away excess energy. And when I'm running through the woods - no matter what form - I feel closer to Gaia, saner, more balanced." She shrugs. "And if that doesn't work, then I scream at people. If I get angry under control, then I avoid getting angry outside. I've no idea if it works, but I don't lose it much."
Alesia nods a little bit, clearly paying very close attention. "Um, Okay..." She says softly, "Can... Can I go run in the woods though? By myself? I need to wait until one of you is with me, right?"
"Yes. Best if one of us is with you. That's really not forever, but you need to get more comfortable in your skin...in fact, in all of your skins...before we can let you go out alone." KL smiles sympathetically. "It's in everyone's best interests, really. But I guess you can go into the courtyard. I'll check with Leslie."
Alesia nods a little bit then says, "I... I know I can turn into a wolf, but I haven't figured it out yet... It's not something you just 'do' it takes some kind of trick or something?" She asks as she peers more at you, stepping out from behind the sofa, "And... and I saw at least one person change without their clothes getting ruined. How did they do that?"
"Ah! Two very good questions." KL says, with a nod. "It is something you just "do", it's not a trick, really. Hard to explain, and hard to teach. Imagine you had been given an extra pair of arms, like Bug. You sort of need to find the nerves that make them work. It's much the same thing, you need to find the bit of your brain that makes you shift." A grimace. "That's not a good explanation, but it's really hard to explain. And as for the second question, there's a rite called "The Rite of Talisman Dedication." that enables things to shift with you. Though there's a limit to how many things you can have.
" Alesia ohs softly as if both of these answers were high energy physics to her, and frowns slightly, "Um, okay..." She shrugs, "Just... I don't have a lot of clothes and now every time I change it ruins what I'm wearing... and I only have these shoes... no others now... and... I'm running out of other things... I don't want to be shoeless, cause it's cold out and I couldn't go outside then?"
"We'll try and get it done. It needs someone who knows the rite, and I don't. Leslie might, I guess." KL sounds very dubious. "Usually, Theurges know lots of rites, and everyone else knows at most a few."
Alesia ohs again and sounds worried, "I don't know any um, rites... and I'm a Theurge, right?" She asks sounding like she's afraid she missed something, "I was more worried about my shoes... I'll try really hard not to ruin my last pair."
"They aren't something you get naturally - though perhaps those who watch over you might know some." KL explains. "You have to be taught them - passed down from someone else who knows them. They're like...um...little prayers? But they really work."
Alesia nods a bit then shrugs, still holding her books you gave her, "KL? Thank you very much for the books. If you ever want some more cookies or something special for dinner or something, just let me know, okay?" She says changing the topic completely.
A smile in response. "You're more than welcome, Alesia. If you want more exciting gifts next year, just drop some really unsubtle hints in the lead up to Yule."
Alesia blinks looking suddenly suprised and then frowns and peers at KL, "Um, what's a Klaive?" It's a question right out of the blue. "It... it's not something you'd normally give as a present, is it?" She says, looking more confused and a little frowny.
"Normally? No!" KL says with a laugh. "Klaives are some of the most powerful, most legendary weapons of our people. They're handed down from one Garou to another. They're very very difficult to make. And they're made of silver, so they're _really_ dangerous and bad to use on other Garou."
Alesia nods a little bit, "Um, okay... then... then I won't ask for one for next Yule." She says a little sheepishly but it's clear there is some kind of internal arguement going on in her head right now that has her a bit distracted.
KL laughs at this. "Good choice, because I'd have no idea where I'd get one from." She sobers a little. "They arguing again?" she asks, sympathetically. "Sorry if I've made them angry.
" Alesia takes a deep breath, "Two of them said ask for a Klaive... and then Megara yelled at them to shut up and then they all started yelling again about it. I... sometimes I can't tell which voices are which and sometimes it seems like some of them just want to say things to see if it's funny or not... and then..." She sighs, "It's hard. I think one of them thought it'd be funny if I asked for that and another one might have been serious... but..." She shakes her head, "Megara is almost always mad... about something."
"Ahroun." KL says, with a nod. She looks a bit sheepish at Alesia. "I'm usually much more spikey and irritable, you really get to see the best side of me." She grins. "You're priviledged. Remember what I was like when Clemency..." her voice trails off. "I need to do something about that, I think."
Alesia nods a little bit then says, "Um, if I give you something could you take it to Sophie? If you're going to the farm house? I haven't seen her for a while and... and maybe it's just she was being nice to me but I never had anyone my age talk to me and not treat me like a was an outcast... and... and so I drew a picture for her... if you'd take it to her?" She says as she goes to her notebook. She tugs out a drawing from the pad and looks at it a moment then holds it up for you to see. It's a drawing of Sophie in homid standing next to what looks like Sophie in wolf form. Both are very detailed and clearly Alesia spent quite a bit of time on it.
KL nods at it. "That's really good. Looks just like her." She smiles at the cub. "Sure, I'll take it up there next time I'm going. Shall we see if we can find something to keep it neat in? A tube or something?"
Alesia ohs and nods, apparently not having thought of that at all, "Do... do you think we could maybe wrap it or something? I don't know... do you think she was just being nice to me? Or... I mean, she hasn't been out to see me much but I guess she probably has lots of stuff to do herself?"
"She was certainly being nice to you, but 'just'? Most Garou...many Garou aren't that subtle. I think she liked you." KL replies. "And yeah, I've got loads of paper left, though it's probably best if you wrap it. I...get a bit annoyed...with fiddly things."
Alesia nods a little bit, then shrugs, "I'm just not used to people being nice to me. Usually they shunned me or something... and... and my dad... and..." She shakes her head, "I just am not used to someone being nice to me without it being the start of a prank or joke, you know?" She says as she hands the drawing to you, "I'll wrap it if we find a tube or something to put it in? Did your paper come on cardboard tubes?
"No..." KL says, her eyes searching the ceiling as she struggles to remember something. "But I think there's one in a cupboard upstairs. Several years old, I guess."
Alesia shrugs a bit, "I don't think the tube being old will be bad? Do we have paper towel rolls? Um, the tubes from them? Two of them together might work?"
"We'll go and have a look. It depends how enthusiastically Leslie's been tidying. There must be something we can use." KL says, making a move towards the staircase. "Though, once again, I stress that you're doing all the arts and crafts around here."
Alesia nods, "That's okay." She says as she follows KL to the stairs.