Logs:Calm Before The Storm: The Bull God

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Calm Before The Storm: The Bull God

"I killed them all."

Dramatis Personae

Brant, Jones, Kharn, Maleko, Alexei, Nate and ST


The fate of one Beastkin and one Wolfblooded is discovered. Part of the Calm Before The Storm plot.


Outside of Fallcoast

They'd searched for a few hours and the scent had lead them just outside of Fallcoast proper for the moment. A young wolfblood and a young Beastkin were last seen a week ago by their families, the couple had been scheduled to be back after their short break before heading back to Saint John's University, but that was cut short when their car and belongings were found driven into Star Lake. Ishmael and Archie had insisted that the two shifter groups work together to see if they could locate and bring them back before anything bad happened.

Having parked his ragged POS of a State owned pickup, Nate makes his way to a spot near where the car was discovered and waits for now. He picks up his phone, "Jenny, I'm going to be investigating that rumor of a cougar over in the hills. Cell and radio reception are spotty at best. I should be ok. I'll check in a few hours." He then waits and then closes the old flip phone, sliding it into his pocket as he turns off his radio.

With the recent events in the area, on this side of the gauntlet and the other, anything worrisome is best investigated. A big black jeep arrives, depositing a large ginger and a skinnier man with a mustache. Kharn is wearing a leather jacket that looks to be concealing something slightly bulkier, grey firehose pants, and a pair of worn boots. "I still think if you cook it enough, it tastes fine." He bickers with the skinnier man. But he decides he should focus on the task at hand and strokes the beard. He nods to Nate across the way and starts moving there while listening to any limp rebuttal about the edibility of roadkill from his alpha.

Tracking scents was not Brant's forte, even given his biological benefits. Still, the Elodoth made for a decent tracker, and even better overwatch. He's detached the sight from his rifle, and is using it to check out their surroundings, while hopefully causing less of a stir than he would were it still atop the fetish long arm.

"Look, I'm not questioning your culinary skills, man. I'm just saying that it's a dangerous proposition. All those little bone bits and the E Coli... it's like a pipe bomb covered in BBs exploding in your colon," Jones answers with a shake of the head and a twist of his moustache's loving arms. Jones is not wearing a leather jacket. He's wearing a battered hoodie and some well-loved jeans. When the Firebeard goes looks towards Nate, Jones follows. "this the place?" he asks.

Alexei is on the trail! The boy had heard about the missing couple through some of his friends at university, so when it turns out that one of them was a beastkin and the other one was a wolfblood, he was pretty interested in finding out what was going on. The boy arrives on foot, looking better dressed for a day at the beach than a day of searching for missing persons. Hey! Alexei is still pretty new to all of this, okay? Even so, the cobalt blue short shorts and the sunshine yellow tshirt are likely to produce a few raised eyebrows. The boy is not dressed for stealth. He is potentially dressed for becoming rapidly nekkid if he wants to kitty cat out though, so maybe that balances it out a little. Maybe? Alexei reaches up to scratch at the top of his head with an air of 'what now?' as he peers about, not really recognising any of the others assembled here just yet. A smile is offered to all nonetheless! Makin' friends!

This is the place alright. The trail was still fresh and they couldn't be that far with things. But the scent that they have to go with...isn't right. There's a new element to it. Like when a Werewolf is about to First Change...it's downright odd! But they find the right direction to follow the duo up to the north. Heading into more forest.

"So somewhere in this direction then.. " Nate inquires as he looks to those that look very sure about where to go. "I can tell they were around.. but that is just about it."

Meandering in, Maleko gives a few sniffs of the place and glances around to give a nod to Nate whom he knows. "They found the car in the lake? Anybody checked that?" he asks of Nate with arched brows as the big surfer steps a little closer. "Mortal authorities already pull the car and stuff up or do they even know about this?" he asks in general to those present.

"Fair enough. But if you cook it hot enough, all that shit dies I think." Kharn shrugs as they come up to the other shifters. "No idea if they told the police, or if the police are doing anything about it. You know how they get with 'missing teens'. They probably just think they ran off and got married." The big redhead clearly doesn't have much stock in the local police outside a few good souls.

"The trail has led us here, sofar. Something is off though. Even I can smell something off about them." Brant explains, scanning the forest edge with his scope. "We may be running into a dual first change situation. If so, it will be an Elodoth on our side, but I've no idea what your kin will change into. Watch out, since two of them will be hard to handle, even with numerical advantage."

"There are some things even fire can't kill, Kharn. I'm not trying to have my asshole look like a Japanese flag from eating some kamikaze squirrel fritters," Jones opines softly, although the scent in the air is not lost on him. He falls even more silent as Maleko and Brant both offer sound advice and questions, looking around for answers as he has none.

Alexei listens to the conversation amongst the others carefully, nodding along on occasion as each new bit of intel is revealed but sadly not having terribly much to add himself. He doesn't really even know the pair beyond what he had heard through the grapevine at school. He follows along the trail with the others though, keeping a sharp eye out for any signs of the missing pair as he goes. His nose wrinkles just a bit every now and again, it smells weird. He isn't sure he likes it much.

About another fifty or so yards and that's when there's the sound of a scream and then a very unhealthy sound. Like bones breaking. The disgusting snap rings out in the quiet forest. Then there's the call of something...it's hard to put into words what the sound is, part wounded animal, part pissed off something. One of the smaller trees go toppling over as something hits it.

Catching the tail end of Kharn and Jones' conversation, just enough to get an idea of what is going on...Maleko has to chime in with his Wonderful Wordly Wisdom (tm), "You only get one 'O' ring, bro. Don't ruin it." Then he is back to the task at hand, "Well if we have a scent, lets follow the trail...we can always check out the car and where it went into the lake later, maybe?" He gives a nod to the others and begins heading on when the sounds start coming and he stops. "Uh...after you, Tommy." he tells Nate who is about half his size.

Alexei bites down on his bottom lip, face lighting up with amusement at the snatches of conversation he's overhearing. I mean, it's totally gross, he thinks they might be talking about eating roadkill or something. But come on, you can't deny it's sort of funny. Gross. But also funny. The barely suppressed giggle is cut somewhat short by the scream and then the really horrible crunchy sound as that nearby sapling goes down. Errr, that can't be good, right? He bets whatever made the crunchy sound is what smelled weird though, just because weird things tend to go together. It's like a venn diagram. All the strange goes together.

Brant turns toward the snapping in the distance, calling on a gift to peel the night from his eyes and let him see clearly. "Not a howl, so I think that's yours, Nate. What's the best way for us to get them through the change? If it was Uratha, then I know what I'd do, but don't want to step on any of your toes."

The sound halts the firebeard's serious discussion with Jones. There's barely a shared glance before he turns in that direction and remains motionless, listening. A hand finds the embossed symbol on the archaic looking bracers on his wrists. A habit now, his fingers trace the artwork on the surface as he puts on some height and weight. More importantly, his senses sharpen, and he listens as Brant asks the important question of how to best handle one of their kind during this traumatic time.

Pausing, Nate looks in the direction of the sound. He takes a breath and his body seems to grow and expand into a more massive form.. his uniform even partly grows with him but looks very tight.. "I have a feeling.. a possible answer.." his voice deep and carrying an undertone of something predatory within.

There are few things more serious than the structural integrity of one's O-ring; however, screams in the forest and crashing trees are one of those things. Jones's energy reserves divert, thankfully, to more pressing matters. He moves to a few paces behind and to the left of Kharn. Kuthgurim. The Firebeard. "Hm?" Nate gets Jones's attention for a moment, but his attentions quickly shift to attempting to visually penetrate the gauntlet and see, perhaps, what may be going on here.

There's the sound of footsteps crunching through the sticks and the underbrush of the woods as a young woman that's been bloodied comes running /towards/ them, "Get the hell out of the way I don't think he's happy!" she shouts as she notices there's others around. It looks as though her arm is messed up, but not broken.

Yes, that sound was definitely not a howl. It was from something big though and once the Shifters come face to face with what made the sound, they might be a little surprised, there's an honest to god Minotaur standing there. Or well, they know it's not /actually/ a Minotaur, but the bull shifters look so much like them. It stares at the group with crazed eyes, the moonlight gleaming off huge horns that have already gored something and are slick with blood.

Brant reaches up over his shoulder as his body bulks up and his silver hair grows shaggier, sideburns filling out and extending down to his jaw. His nose flattens somewhat, and his jaw becomes more angular. Perhaps more curious though, is the rifle stock that appears between his shoudlerblades, being drawn out of the collar of his shirt. Soon, an M1-Garand rifle is in his hand, complete with affixed bayonet gleaming in the moonlight. He takes a moment to empty the magazine, pocketting the .30-06 shells while still looking off toward the ruckus. As the Minotaur appears, he frowns and says gruffly, "Winslow, I'm gonna need a reload here, asap. Riot Control."

Taking his cue from the others as they begin shifting and making ready for a titanic beast or something equally scary, Maleko shifts forms as well. He tugs off his tank top and tucks it into the waist of his shorts as he begins to grow larger, giant size now with a low brow ridge and the beginning bump of what looks like a dorsal fin on his back. Mal looks up as the girl comes running at them and sees the 'Minotaur' standing there big and proud...and angry. So so angry. He looks at Nate. "Now what?"

Kharn furrows his brow when the Minotaur comes through the brush and sighs heavily. He's big, and mad, and probably lost a lot of his 'reasoning' abilities. He is not a foe, and Kharn defers to the Bull's own kind to make the first move, be it subdue or convince. For now, Kharn just stands his ground, trying to feel out the situation.

"Amy?" The huge striped Feral that is known as Nate asks gruffly of the girl. Answering the shark, "Keep peace when possible.. no sense in letting our tiger's run wild." He looks to the Minotaur holding his hands out and open, "Easy now... " Mind you.. a man tiger trying to keep the calm just has that bizarre sense of this should be a meme or something..

Alexei glances around as the girl and then the great big massive huge ginormous meaty minoboy comes crashing through the trees. That looks, hrmmm...less than ideal. Like, those horns are sort of massive! And sharp! Pointy! Alexei doesn't want to be a shish-kebob! He glances about for a moment and does his Clark Kent bit...there aren't any nearby phone boxes, but there is a nearby tree that the boy dashes towards and soon clothes are flying this way and that as they are thrown every which way. This accomplished, Alexei is free to shift without getting all tangled up in his clothes, which would be awks. A few seconds later, Alexei emerges from behind said tree, with his cat on. Alexei can't do these fancy throwback forms! They look cooool though.

It's not easy to look unthreatening when holding a rifle with bayonet fixed, but Brant is trying to do so. It's an Elodoth thing. He does send a surge of essence into his companion though, waking her to duty and filling the empty magazine with an ephemeral clip of rubber bullets." Wait, I thought Amy was the beastkin.. if that's her, then who is this?" He asks, looking at the minotaur and cocking his head slightly.

Giving a nod of his head to Nate, the big shark-man-surfer-dude lets the tiger try to be social and persuasive, cause he is not. Still with a glance toward Kharn and the Werewolves to see what they are doing, he stays by Nate's side. He tries to relax so he doesn't reflect tension on the bull shifter, but damn if he isn't tense! Maleko stands ready to step in front of his little tiger buddy is this big bull beast starts a swinging.

Jones checks his right, yep, Kharn is still there. It's not nice to punch strangers in the face and so the wolf opts for diplomacy, "Whoa, there." His hands don't lift above his waist and are spread out. Non-threatening. "Relax. Breathe, now. Breathe. Don't, uh, do anything crazy. We can get you through this." He hopes that he does not lie.

"I'm Amy. That is Roger...or well...yeah..." the youth states. Was she a bit weirded out that her mate was now a huge hulking Bull? Very much so. She doesn't know what to do so she stands there.

The Minotaur doesn't advance. But his eyes keep flicking to the girl that has stopped behind the group. Then he looks to the other shifters around him and that seems to settle him somewhat. But where did all the blood come from?

The tall cat man nods to Amy and then looks up to Roger as he starts speaking again, "I am still fairly new at this.. my elders never told me that your Kin could take on our change.." He takes a step forward, still showing open hands, "Roger.. just breath.. relax. I know, not easy right now.. every instinct of yours on the primal edge. What happened Roger? If you can't speak now.. that is ok. Once you relax enough.. you'll change."

"I suppose that's why his scent was off, if it wasn't Luna calling to him." Brant ponders aloud, slowly resting the rifle in the crook of his left elbow and removing his right hand from the grip. If it never devolved to violence, then there was no need for the prep. He waits to see what response Jones gets from Roger, waiting to aid his fellow Elodoth if needed.

Brant looks friendly. He's not even pointing his rifle at anyone. See? See? He's nice. We're nice. We're all nice. Jones uses this to his advantage and approaches the other Elodoth, placing his hand on his shoulder, "You're going through a lot right now, man. We get it. We've..." Jones gestures to those assembled, "... all been there. It's going to be alright. Listen. Why don't you have a seat. Focus on your breathing."

Alexei considers the unfolding scene a moment, large yellow-green eyes blinking slowly. Hmm, maybe this was actually an inopportune time to get his cat on after all. This seemed so smart only a few seconds ago. Isn't hindsight a wonderful thing? He pads back over towards the others and sits down, trying to look unthreatening and calm and soothing and tranquil though his tail swishes about in a slightly agitated way all the same. The bullboy is still pretty massive. Alexei sure hopes he stays calm. Because this could sure get ugly if he doesn't!

Kharn remains motionless as the others begin to try and calm the Bull-man down. They work together, the group, and Kharn assumes his least threatening stance. Hopefully there's not a charge in their future, those horns are big and he's got a mountain of muscle to put behind them. So for now, he waits.

Roger the Bull shifts his weight, it was going to be odd getting used to this, but he finally listens to the voices of reason and he starts to De-Hulk himself. It's a bit sloppy and well, the kids naked at the end. He doesn't seem to care though. "I killed those guys..." he tells them as he looks back over his shoulder. Towards the clearing. "I don't feel bad either." he states as he looks back to them.

"Uhhh, what guys?" Maleko asks in a low tone as he watches Roger shift back into a human. He looks toward the clearing where the bull-dude glances. Mal casts a glance at Nate and then toward the Werewolves, "Anybody else think we should check that out?" Before he can get an answer though, the giant pseudo shark-man begins heading up the hill where Roger came from to see what 'those guys' he just killed.

Nate takes a breath.. "Sounds like there is a story in that somewhere.." Yeah.. leave it to a Ripper to not be overly worried about death. "Got a reader's digest version of what happened, Roger?" He does his best not to sound accusatory

Jones pulls his hoody off over his head, revealing a shirtless, scarred, and skinny torso. He approaches the boy. "All of 'em?" Jones asks, giving him the sweatshirt. It smells like hobos and Hoover blankets, but it's better than being bloody and completely naked. Barely. He looks to Kharn and jerks his chin upwards as if to say, 'See what you can find out'

"What happened? Your car was found pushed into Star Lake, but we were able to track your scents to here." Brant queries the freshly turned minotaur. "We thought one or both of you might be nuzushul, or whatever the shifter term is for it, but weren't expecting this exact combination."

Killed...is an understatement.

The small clearing that the two came from looks like a small horror movie was shot there. Blood soaks the ground and there's gored and torn bodies littering the ground like last week's trash. The bodies are all wearing thick black hooded robes and scattered about a low lying stone that looks to be used for a makeshift altar. Something really went wrong.

The young man looks to the group that stays, "We were going to go camping out in the older part of Greater County Area. Got ran off the road and then taken. I don't know what they wanted. But they were trying to do some sort of ritual...and I came out like this." he states as he pulls on the sweatshirt of Jones, he doesn't care what it smells like. Amy might though.

Nate looks over to Alexei. "Alexie.. Think you could lay down some cat tracks.. you should be about the right size for faking cougar.. and any of you know where there are cattle? I've got an idea.. if we can get a bull on the fly." He then starts to shift down to human.

"Wow...damn...wow...holy hell..." Maleko says as he gets to the top of the hill and into the clearing. He stands there surveying the bloody scene with his hands on his hips. "I'll handle clean up...no worries. At least the meat..and bone...and whatever else. We can burn the clothing and a good rain will wash the blood away." Meat is meat, right? Helps to also be able to devour those kinds of things easily. He goes about collecting the body parts.

"A ritual, huh? I'd heard a legend about a group that forced people to become bulls, but had never seen any actual proof of it. Sounded to me like something an Irraka made up for a story contest or something." Brant admits, slinging his rifle over his shoulder and approaching to look over Roger for any remnants of ritual trappings. "Maybe it wasn't just smoke being blown. Amy, were they doing the ritual on you both, or just on Roger?"

Alexei sort of makes an affirmative little 'mrow' in response to Nate and promptly heads off in the direction of the clearing with a happy little swish of his tail. Alexei is normally pretty good at sneaking around and covering up his tracks, so it is sort of fun to be making them on purpose for once!! He even goes one step further and scratches up some of the trees a little, making sure there are lots and lot of tracks and marks for even the most hapless of human law enforcement to find. This accomplished, the boy eventually heads back towards his changing tree, bringing the naked by count to two (briefly) before gathering up his clothe and re-emerging from the undergrowth with a spring in his step. He helped!

Jones listens to the story, and to those around him. "It'll be ok, Kid. Come see me, we'll sort it all out." His eyes drift to the bodies and the altar and the fuckery of it all. Then. Then something catches him like a hook in the back of his brain and tugs a look of righteous indignation in the Elodoth. He remains composed. Calm. He does not flush. Jones only stands, shoulders square. He walks with purpose and carries conspiracy in his elbows.

"Drop the fucking bodies," he tells Maleko then pauses only long enough to make his point made. "Burn them," this, he says, to the others around. "Save the heads," this to Kharn specifically.

"Nu hu uzu eren." These words carry a heavy meaning for Jones. "I don't give a fuck if you're one of us or not."

Well, perhaps gross to see but Nate doesn't seem to have a huge issue with the shark feeding. "Ok.. cancel the cattle call.." He then shrugs, "Was a good idea while it lasted.. and not a bad job." He moves to obscure some of the tracks, "Can't make it too easy for the Game Wardens.. Bob should be in this area in two days." He looks to Jones and friends, "If Roger has become one of the Tuarae.. we can help educate him. I'm sure Archie has some contacts some where amongst those folk.. there was a Bison around here somewhere a couple years back.. but I haven't seen the kid in over a year.."