Jun 09

Chapter 77: Sight

Chapter 77: Sight

In Which Even The Darkest Clouds Have A Silver Lining.


Arrin: Sometime later, the otter’s consciousness slowly returns to him and his eyes flicker open. The smell of musty straw fills his nostrils as he slowly takes in surroundings, a few things catch his eye; the important thing in all this being of course, that he can see them. With his eyes!!! Spotting a very familiar looking ferret and fox not too far away, he calls out hesitantly, “Joz, Holst?”

Chris: Holst sits upright, popping his neck in a few places. He begins to wipe the dried mud from his face in a bit of disgust.

Catamount: The ferret stands stiffly at the only view outside of the cell, trying to peer around corners to get a sense of the place. “I’m here, Soq.”

Arrin: Soquan blinks slowly, trying to reassure himself that he’s not dreaming. Slowly, he replies, “I know… I… I can see you.”

Chris: Holst stops wiping and cocks an eyebrow. “Soq are you alright?”

Catamount: Jozra’s brow furrows in surprise as she wonders if she heard the otter right. She turns her head slowly to look at him.

Arrin: Soquan sits up gingerly and returns the ferret’s questioning gaze with a slight grin. “My head hurts like hell. Other than that and a few bruises, I’m fine.”

Chris: Holst merely looks to Joz with slightly widened eyes.

Catamount: The ferret finally releases the bars she had been hanging on to and slowly walks towards the otter. “But… you can see.”

Arrin: The otter’s grin remains. “I know. Something must have knocked back into place when they hit my head.”

Chris: Holst thinks for a moment. “I don’t know much about biology. I just know that that’s a great thing, Soq.”

Arrin: Soquan, if possible, beams even more and gives a somewhat happy whoop, bounding to his feet and scooping Jozra up in a tight hug the next moment. “I can see!”

Catamount: The ferret laughs, caught up in Soquan’s excitement. “That’s great Soq!”

Chris: Holst stands and offers a hearty pat to Soq’s back. He pauses in thought. “So wait… you’ve never seen either of us, or just me?”

Arrin: Soquan laughs and holds the ferret for just a few moments longer before releasing her after Holst questions him. “I’ve been blind for the last five years now. I have never seen either of you.” His brow furrows. “Funny though, you both look how I pictured you, and I swear I recognize you both from somewhere…”

Catamount: The ferret chuckles, not paying much attention to the comment about recognizing the two of them. She’s more amazed that her friend has his vision back. And it is in the midst of this that several guards march up to their cell, serving as a protective escort for the lean commander from before.

Chris: Holst scowls and absentmindedly reaches for his chain, his paw merely grasping air.

Arrin: Soquan’s laughing stops the moment he hears the guards and he quickly goes to move his blindfold over his eyes, whispering quietly so only the two of them can hear, “Don’t say a word about me being able to see.”

Catamount: The benefits of the small black blades were that they were sharp, deadly and could be easily concealed. The hares had found most of Jozra’s but there were three that they had missed. The ferret kept her paws from straying towards any of them, though. She didn’t want her remaining weapons removed.

Chris: The commander raps the cell bars loudly with his baton upon seeing Soquan whisper. “Conspiracy with vermin is prohibited otter. I’m finding myself inclined to consider you a traitor with all I’ve seen thus far.”

Arrin: Soquan turns towards the source of the voice, slightly more comfortable in his sightless state. “Conspiracy? Vermin? What the hell is going on here?”

Chris: The commander narrows his eyes and questions the guards around him. “Was this otter wearing that blindfold in the altercation?” Several nod in agreement. He looks to Soq. “I assume you’re blind?”

Arrin: Soquan forces himself not to lace his words with sarcasm as he waves a paw vaguely in front of himself. “Of course I am, either that or someone has been playing a very cruel trick on me for five years.”

Catamount: The ferret has to bite her tongue to keep from snickering. The otter seems to be doing quite well speaking for the three of them. She has no desire to draw any attention to herself and try to speak on their behalf instead.

Chris: The commander smirks. “So you know nothing of these vermin standing beside you?”

Arrin: Soquan attempts to look warily at the commander.* I trust both these so called ‘vermin’ more than yourself or any other beast nearby at the moment, and if your ‘welcome’ is anything to go by, I’m right to do so.”

Chris: The commander smirks once more. “Well, your misconceptions as to our intentions aside, no vermin are ever to be trusted or conspired with. It’s law, but it’s also just good sense. Which leads me to believe you are sympathetic to their cause.”

Arrin: Soquan can help but laugh at the statement. “Oh gods, you have to be kidding me, right?”

Chris: The commander remains stern. “I’ll give you a few more iterations otter. I’m growing tired of giving you the benefit of the doubt.”

Arrin: Soquan sighs tiredly and rubs his eyes though the fabric of his blindfold. “Look, I realize that you have LAWS here concerning those stereotypically… vermin…” Soquan practically spits out that last word in distaste and continues. “You must realize though, that these laws don’t extend the whole country. Where I come from it’s not a crime to ‘conspire with vermin’ and trust me, if I knew it was like this here, we would have steered clear.”

Chris: The commander sighs, flashing a fanged smile. “I’ll ignore that last part.” He becomes a bit more stern. “Considering that the circumstances of your capture were questionable, this is what it will be: You will be transferred to a vermin ghetto which you are not to leave the boundaries of. The female will remain with you at all times as your eyes until it is determined you are self sufficient. You will be evaluated on your ability to enter civil society for a period of time. After a probation period it will be decided whether you are to be set free. While I am loathe to see an obviously violent vermin not be put into a work camp, I am also loathe to wasting a member of my staff. The male will be immediately transferred to a work camp.”

Catamount: Jozra can’t help but breathe a little sigh of relief that she’ll be kept with Soquan… and in what sounds like a less heavily guarded area. She casts a worried glance towards the fox, however.

Arrin: Soquan gives a soft sigh and turns back to Holst and Jozra for a moment, as if contemplating his decision before turning back to the commander. “Fine.”

Chris: The commander laughs. “You’re under the impression you had a choice?” A few of the guards snicker as the commander selects eight to enter the cell and restrain them. “All said and done, effective immediately.”

Arrin: Soquan bares his teeth slightly as he anticipates the guards. “No need to bully us about, we’ll go quietly.”

Chris: Holst has no friendly feeling towards the commander, but he’s more cold and calculating than rash. Doing anything would only make it worse. If it were only him he’d risk it… he wasn’t used to liability and the moment he had it; he hated it. Holst nods at the guards and goes peacefully. His eyes betraying the cool resolve his face wore.

Catamount: Jozra has been planning during the whole exchange and at this point her plans involve playing the part of a very subdued ferret. Anything else would draw too much attention to herself and she needs time to regroup and assess the situation… from outside of a ‘work camp’. She too, goes quietly with barely a look at the hares, making herself seem like a crucial tool for Soquan’s navigation of the world.

Arrin: Soquan easily slips back into the poor blind otter persona and makes a show of feeling around before settling his paw lightly on Jozra’s forearm. “Where’s my staff?”

Chris: The hare captain smirks as the guards pair off to escort Holst and a few escort Joz and Soq. Holst chances a look back as he is lead the opposite direction from them.

Catamount: Jozra tries to surreptitiously watch where they’re taking Holst while replying to Soquan. “They’ve taken it, Soq.”

Arrin: Soquan stays in character. “But how do they plan on me finding my way around myself without it?”

Chris: The commander sighs and realizes how much time he’s wasted thus far. He nods to a hare that produces Soq’s staff and hands it to him. The commander whispers a few orders to one of the guards and begins to walk off.

Catamount: The ferret continues leading Soquan, though she quietly thanks the hare for the staff in a very subdued manner.

Arrin: Soquan nods his thanks as well and says no more, subtly giving Joz’s arm a slight squeeze as they follow the hares.

Chris: They’re lead to an ancillary room where, after a brief rummaging the travelers packs are returned.

Catamount: Jozra helps Soquan into his pack straps and then hefts her own.

Arrin: Once all settled up, Soquan looks towards the hares and asks hesitantly. “So where exactly will we be staying?”

Chris: One of the hares, a sergeant by the stripes on his shoulder, gives a not-all-that-comforting laugh. “You’ll see.” A couple of the guards snicker and it takes a moment for the sergeant to realize. “Or maybe you won’t!”

The sarge gives a hearty laugh as he shoves the two forward through a door that exits the complex.

Catamount: Jozra suppresses a scowl and then blinks in the sudden sunlight. The complex opens into a small courtyard surrounded by a fence and guarded with a small guard platform. Beyond are the slums. The ferret begins describing it to the otter in an undertone.

Arrin: Hearing Jozra’s descriptions, the otter growls low in his throat and spits out in the lowest of undertones. “Bloody speciests.”

Chris: The hares escorting them both give them less than gentle nudges at their conversing. They’re led to a small gate in the fence. The sergeant addresses them. “Alright, this is where our care of you ends. You two are lucky the commander was in a good mood today.”

Soq is shoved down through the gate. “Especially you ferret.” The sarge does the same to Joz and the gate is slammed shut behind them, the echoes of the hare’s laughter ringing along with the metal of the fence.

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