Time/Date : It is currently 06:37 Pacific Time on Fri Dec 28 2007.
Place : Greek House: Common Area(#2409RAJh$)
Weather :Currently in Saint Claire, it is raining. The temperature is 39 degrees Fahrenheit (3 degrees Celsius). The wind is currently coming in from the north at 9 mph. The barometric pressure reading is 29.82 and rising, and the relative humidity is 89 percent. The dewpoint is 36 degrees Fahrenheit (2 degrees Celsius.)
Moon Phase : Currently the moon is in the waning Gibbous Moon phase (73% full).
Greek House: Common Area(#2409RAJh$)
This is the central hub of the house. From here, you can still see the entrance foyer, as well as the stairway that heads to the second story. Towards the back of the common area is a set of glass doors that lead out to a courtyard. To the east, an arched doorway leads to what apparently serves as a library, office, and workroom, and to the west, an arched doorway leads to what appears to be a kitchen and dining area..
There are several chairs here, simple, elegant, yet functional in their design and intent. The room has a comfortable feel to it, but is a bit ascetic in design. The walls are off-white, the molding dark cherry wood and decorated with acanthus-leaf ornamentation at the corners. A pair of antique spears are hung crossed against each other on one wall, and a wall-relief depicting a scene of Grecian warriors hangs on the other. Above the mantle of the fireplace is a small statue of Artemis, on either side of that, dark metal candlesticks with ivory pillar candles. The entire room is a study in the contrast of light and dark.
Looking at Zeke:
A young man who may just be approaching his late teens, Zeke is not overly tall- topping off at about 5'10", and not overly muscled. He does look fit though, perhaps the kind of average physique that suggests an active lifestyle opposed to hours spent on the weight bench. His carriage is modest and without any aloofness about him, though he does not give the impression of being uncomfortable in his skin either.
His face is a oval rather than narrow, broad cheeked and with a wide, easy grin. A fair skinned complexion grants an even starker contrast for his jade-green eyes. The three-day stubble he wears seems to be planned rather than a show of laziness, or perhaps he just doesn't grow facial hair very well; regardless, the hair outlines over his lip and on the lowest part of his chin.
His clothes are simple and effective, and no matter what time of year it is, Zeke is found wearing long sleeve shirts and a wide variety of beanie hats- always worn down past the ears. His jeans appear well worn and loved, and his shoes are of the common Mall Shoestore variety. He's also a fond supporter of hooded sweatshirts and jackets- again, hood always up.
Sometime over the last couple of years, a teen girl with a poor attitude and a hair-trigger temper has grown up, and matured into a young woman. With a poor attitude and a hair-trigger temper. KL is a little over five-foot tall - no late growth spurt for her - and slimly built. She moves quickly, and is rarely still for any length of time. Her natural balance and co-ordination are clearly evident in her movement, but any hint of grace is smothered with her air of irritation, hostility and restrained aggression. She manages to turn even simple activities - like ordering fries - into not particularly subtle attempts to provoke fights.
Her mousy-brown hair hangs loose around her shoulders, the front falling to frame her face. Her hair looks like it has been cut recently, and by someone with at least a little skill. She's really quite attractive, perhaps not a pin-up, but far from ugly, with a cute upturned nose and wide expressive hazelnut eyes. However, any level of appeal her physical appearance might have is swamped by the anger in her gaze and the sullen set of her mouth. She stares at people - particularly people she doesn't know - with a cold fury, as if trying to decide exactly which way to kill them.
KL has pale skin decorated in two places - on her left upper arm is a largish tattoo of something that looks a little like a bear, with its jaws spread wide and slaver falling in droplets. It has the words "No Mercy" written with gusto beneath it. On her right shoulder-blade, if visible, is a second tattoo, two-inch-square, of a winged horse. There isn't much in the way of excess flesh on her, her cheekbones are clearly visible and her bare arms have a tight musculature that speaks of regular and plentiful exercise.
She is wearing a pair of blue jeans that look brand-new, and have a designer label clearly visible on the rear, a pair of combat boots that also look new. On her upper half she is sporting a rather snazzy black leather jacket over a clean new white t-shirt.
Around her neck hangs a pendant, an oval disk made of some kind of bone. It looks like it's been decorated with carved designs, which are somewhat hard to make out on casual inspection. The pendant is hung on a leather thong.
Zeke is inside again this morning, though oddly enough without any reading material. He has a few items on the table in front of him. A fresh out of the mint roll of quarters, a metallic blue painted spinning disc, and a silver colored top.
KL comes down the stairs. She's dressed and showered, but somehow she looks almost half-dead, hair a mussed mess, eyes red, and brow furrowed in pain. She's moving very carefully and quietly, as she makes her way toward the kitchen. On seeing Zeke, she stiffens, and then continues, obviously ignoring him.
Zeke turns at the sound, quiet as it might be. "KL," he offers brightly (for him) as if nothing were amiss. "Can you help me?"
The Ahroun winces and looks over at Zeke. "Always," she says very quietly. "If you promise to keep your voice down. I have the worst headache ever." She makes her way over to the table, her eyes somewhat warily on the Philodox.
Zeke nods his head, "Alright. Is there a reason your head is aching?" He's much quieter now. "I have these things here, but I don't know which would be most appreciated by Raccoon. I'm supposed to meet him today."
"I think Alexander's brandy had something to do with it. And spending about three hours walking around in the rain," KL says, her voice still low. "Oh? Raccoon? A totem of cunning," she looks at Zeke, appraising. "Yeah, maybe. Doesn't he like shiny things to be left in the woods? Or is that a different one?"
"I know, I'm rather nervous about the whole thing. It's Kaz's pack. I am supposed to meet him today and she said to bring shinies. But I don't know which would work best." Zeke looks up at her, "Or if this is a mistake altogether, even." A half second passes, "I can make you some tea."
KL ponders this. "No thanks to the tea - not a great fan of hot drinks, except coffee very occasionally. A milk would be nice, though." She studies the coins. "I don't think it is a mistake. I think...you'll end up following a totem of wisdom, but there's a road to go before you get there. And maybe a totem of cunning will help you get more confident...show you the paths to both wisdom and stupidity." She blinks. "Wrong word. Foolishness, that's better." She pushes the silver top forward. "I think this is pretty shiny," she says.
Zeke sighs, "A half moon isn't supposed to be cunning. Nor is he supposed to ... well, anyway. What if he doesn't accept me? I can't join a warpack, I can't fight well enough. I can't join Lefty's pack because of... differences of opinion. I don't want to be a lonewolf."
KL smiles, "You worry too much, you know," she says lightly. "I don't think a war pack is the right place for you, but there's no reason why you couldn't. I'd have you." She leans back in her seat. "And there's nothing wrong with a Philodox being cunning." A pointed finger, and a slightly raised voice, "especially not a young one like you." She winces. "Ow. Too loud."
Zeke gets up then as she winces, and as he walks past, he gives her a squeeze on the shoulder. "Thanks KL." He starts the tea pot boiling and then comes back. "I think maybe, being cunning with your words is okay. But not manipulative. You think there is a difference?"
The Ahroun considers, "I think...hmm..." She falls silent as she ponders again. "I think we all manipulate each other, all the time. Whether consciously or not. So it's a question of degree." She screws up one side of her mouth, in a sort of lopsided grimace. "I think that it is not necessary to be dishonorable to be cunning. In the same way as one does not need to be foolish to be gloriously brave, or cowardly to be wise." She nods firmly and winces again. "Does that make any sense? You can be cunning in any number of ways, and if your motives and goals are good, it's OK."
Zeke gives a nod of his head, "Yes, it does make sense KL. Perfect sense." He smiles at her then, looking down. "Will you be at moot?"
"Should be!" KL says cheerfully. "Oh my poor head. Why? Is there something good going to happen? I mean, more than usual."
Zeke shakes his head, "I've not been to moot yet here. I'm not sure I want to go."
"Oh! Does that mean you'll be introducing yourself?" KL asks, brightly. "It's OK, really. I mean, sometimes there's lots of boring argument, but not always. And there's the revel." She twitches her fingers, as if they had imaginary claws on the ends of them. "Helps get the kinks out."
Zeke looks to her, "I don't think I need to introduce myself. Most everyone around here knows me by name at least. And I really don't want to stand in front of them all in crinos." A hand comes up, "I got mad yesterday. At this Silver Fang I met."
"Oh?" KL asks, totally non-judgmentally. "Who? And why? I mean, if it was me, it would be business as usual, but...it wasn't Cedric, was it?"
Zeke shakes, "No, Cedric and I don't get on though either. But that's to be expected. It was Blackriver. I met her in lupus..." he explains. "I didn't like the way she looked at me. So, so I was a little passive aggressive."
KL smiles. "Not my favourite Garou in the world either," she comments lightly. "Don't sweat it. Did you say anything unforgivable? Rip her throat out? Anything like that?" The tiniest flicker of hope in her eyes as she asks this.
Zeke laughs a short chuckle, "No. I was just a little sarcastic with her. I probably had no right to be though." He takes a short breath, "Can I confess something to you KL?"
"Sure," KL says. "And I do keep confidences. So... you can trust me. I mean, not to not shout at you, but for stuff that matters. Shoot."
Zeke grins and then looks down. "I think I'm changing. And I am not sure it's for the better."
"What do you mean?" KL asks, putting her head on one side. "Changing how? Getting more irritable?" She looks concerned.
Zeke nods, "That would be one way to say it I suppose. More frustrated. Less, less willing to just sit back and accept things because I've been told that's the way. I get angry at things, and at people now, I used to just, shrug it off and keep my mouth shut."
"Good," KL says, with satisfaction. "I mean, you should take everything I say as the absolute truth. But other people are wrong most of the time." A twinkle in her eyes, and the corners just wrinkle slightly. "But yes. There are times when you have to take it, but that's a long way from always." She shrugs.
Zeke gives a little smile at her, but his eyes drop down again. "I think it's dangerous KL. I'm metis. I am not supposed to... think like this. And I am Philodox on top of it? I can't keep things straight."
The Ahroun purses her lips, and is silent for a moment. "You take whatever you can. People will knock you back, because you're a metis. They'll hit you, both actually and with words, over and over again. If you just take it...if you get cowed, then you'll be less than you could be. And that would be a crime." She pauses. "If you were an ahroun, and you had a damaged arm, would you be as good a fighter? Would you stop fighting? You're a metis, can't be helped, can't be changed. Are you going to let that be it? Let it be the only thing that defines you? The limit? Or are you going to push against it, give everything you can? Be the best Garou you can, doing what you believe is right?" There's an odd note, and enthusiasm in her voice, a slightly infectious rhythm. All sign of her headache appears to be gone.
Zeke looks up and nods, "I know KL! I do. I used to teach that to the cubs, but... that was before everything happened here. Now the one thing I was good at, being a sound half moon, it's being pulled out from under my feet. *I* don't know where I stand on things anymore, and what scares me more, is that lately, it's falling less and less traditional. But who will hear me? I don't want to be wrong in what I'm thinking."
"Talk, then," KL says. "To me or to somebody who actually knows stuff. Don't be afraid to be sacrilegous. But also, don't be downhearted if you *don't* change people's minds. I mean, you aren't going to be able to change my mind about the first tenet no matter how hard you try. I believe what I believe. The fact that the rest of the sept doesn't is relevant only to my actions." She pauses. "No idea what I'm saying. Why don't you tell me what you're thinking. Promise no violence."
The tea kettle whistles and he nods to the Ahroun as he goes about pouring two small cups of tea. It's brought back and as he hands one over to her, he sets down. "Alright. You've heard of Cole's challenge with Laora, and how she is elder now? I think the whole ritual of challenging on matters like that is stupid. It leaves too much to chance, or to manipulation. Cole /is/ the better leader, and yet he lost the challenge. So he challenged her back for it. And her terms were... in a sense, a confession of how horribly she fits the needs of a strong leader. Yet they have to go through the bullshit of the challenge? Why? It makes no sense, and it hurts the Garou."
KL pauses, and ponders. "What happens if it isn't there. Who decides who gets to be leader? How does it change?" She looks at Zeke, eyebrows raised enquiringly.
Zeke shakes, "No, not like that. I mean, the challenge is fine, but it shouldn't fall to the exact terms of the challenge. It should fall to a halfmoon, or the tribe, or the pack. Here. I'll explain. Laora, enraged by Cedrics claiming his weapon was a proper klaive, made a fake one herself and gave it to Cedric after breaking his. Her terms to Cole were that he had to convince Cedric the blade he carried was fake, and have him admit such. If she was so damned upset about his carrying this blade why would she copy it and make another to pawn off onto him. There is no honor in that at all, and yet she is the elder? By the setting of /those/ terms, the challenge should have been over and the eldership returned to Cole."
"I agree," KL says, "and only partly because Cedric is my packmate and I hate to see him mistreated so." She shrugs. "But Cole had the choice not to accept those terms. And then it would have been up to a half-moon to decide whether or not they were fair. He didn't. His choice. What would you have happen differently?"
"Challenges should take place in front of a half moon, or the individuals involved. Tribe, or pack, etcetera. When a blatant showing of dishonor or a lack of wisdom comes up, they would call the challenge to a halt or something." Zeke sighs, "Instead, this honorless, and petty woman has control of a tribe that was just fine under Cole's leadership."
"But if Cole isn't wise enough, or isn't cunning enough, to know that the terms are not honorable," KL persists, "then is he really that fitted to be a leader? I mean, it's not like Laora tricked him, is it? I mean, I think you're right, I think that Cole is a better leader and the challenge is fucking shit, but I'm not sure that other people interfering without being asked is a good idea."
Zeke grows frustrated in the conversation. "Cunning. So whoever can outmanipulate the others is best leader. I guess maybe packing under Raccoon is the best thing I can do. That way, I can learn to be conniving and manipulative and cunning. And then someday I can lead a pack, or the tribe even! How would that be! A male leading the Furies. I can hardly wait."
KL shakes her head. "What use is a leader who's easily manipulated? A glorious puppet for someone else!" She snaps back. "You still think of cunning as being deceitful. It fucking well doesn't have to be. I want to follow a leader who is brave and courageous and never backs down, but who is bright enough not to lead me blindly into suicidal situations. Who has judgment as well as a strong fist." Her eyes harden. "Laora will not stay leader of the Fianna for long. But maybe the person who replaces her will be able to recognise a stupid challenge when she sees it."
Zeke tightens his features and shrugs. "I hate our society. I really do. If it was really 'working' as it was supposed to, then why are our numbers falling and we are getting no where."
A long pause. "That's a very good question," KL says, quietly. "And one that should be asked more often. I sometimes wonder if our job, Gaia's purpose for us, is not to win, but to lose slowly." She looks grim. "I'm not sure I like that thought."
Zeke sighs heavily, "Sorry. See, see this is what I mean. I snap. I get frustrated and angry, and I snap."
KL grins. "Welcome to the club," she says. "And feel free to do it at any time to me."
Zeke looks up to find her grinning and nods, "Thanks hon. I think I'm going to do what you suggested I do, and go to the caern. I'll just stay out of lupus I guess. Hey, at moot? If I do go. Will you, I mean, can I hang by you?"
"Sure!" KL says. "We Furies should stick together." She grins. "And I don't have any plans to say anything stupid, so you won't be embarrassed."