ardent

Face to Face With Your Demons

Ikigai



Deimos

Elysium
Predator

Intermediate Fighter (45)

Intermediate Hunter (30)

age
6 Years
gender
Male
gems
167
size
Dire wolf
build
Heavy
posts
54
player
Shelby
11-02-2022, 01:44 PM

Deimos rolled back onto his stomach with a groan as Alastor walked away, gritting his teeth against the white hot pain that was radiating from the right side of his face. His right eye squinted shut to keep the blood that was running down over his face from running into it. At the very least it seemed that Manea's fucking husband had missed the eye itself—not for lacking on the brute's part he was sure. If he hadn't been Manea's brother he was fairly certain Alastor would have just gone for the throat and ended him. With how he was currently feeling that might have been preferable. With a grunt of effort he pushed himself to his paws, still unsteady from his hangover and now with the blood loss layered on top of it there was a good bit of effort involved with getting himself back into the cave.

The events of the night prior were still fuzzy, still indistinct, but he knew he had been rough with Ikigai. The smell of blood and sex that had been in the cave when he was woken up gave that away. The extent of that was still fairly lost on him, but it didn't take a genius to figure out that was why Alastor had come after him nor the fact that this was his punishment for whatever he had done. He made it to the now dead fire in the main chamber of the cave before he collapsed onto his haunches, his breathing heavy through clinched teeth. He didn't know exactly how bad the damage Alastor had done really was, but it felt awful. If the Commander's goal was to make him hurt he had certainly accomplished that.

"Fuck..." he muttered under his breath as he tried to get up to keep heading toward their collective supplies and failed, falling back to his haunches, somehow keeping himself in a sitting position instead of falling completely to the ground. The fact that he was going to have to get help from the very woman that he had been punished for brutalizing didn't slip past him and he hung his head with a frustrated growl, staring at the ground and watching blood drip from his wounds to the stone floor under his feet. He already knew that Ikigai had gotten the raw end of the deal landing him as her husband, but perhaps he had underestimated just how much so.

"Deimos Medacium"





Ikigai

Elysium
Emissary

Expert Healer (205)

Master Intellectual (240)

Professor

age
2 Years
gender
Female
gems
509
size
Medium
build
Light
posts
173
player
Resin

The Ooze ParticipantThe Ooze - Variation 2
11-08-2022, 02:26 AM

With her wounds tended to and her coat clean and tidy once more, Ikigai dried herself as best as she could so that she didn't drip all the way back to the cave. In her haste to cover up the scene, she hadn't brought her comb with her and, if she didn't get the tangles out of her long coat while it was damp, it would be a mess. She had no choice but to head back to the cave and could only hope that Deimos was still passed out from the drink.

Before she even reached the spacious cave, Ikigai could smell blood on the air and it wasn't her own. She hurried towards the den and noted the smatterings of blood on the stones outside. The fae's brow furrowed and she moved into the den, following the droplets like a crumb trail. Iki dropped the wet furs just inside the door, going still and allowing her mercuric gaze to adjust to the change in lighting. Her eyes adjusted just in time to see Deimos stumble and seat himself hard. Again her brows furrowed and she could feel the dull thud of stress and anxiety thumping inside her skull. What to do...

Any other woman might leave the man to tend to himself after what he'd done. She would have been well within her rights to let him bleed and work through his own pain just as he'd allowed her to do. Granted, she hadn't inflicted these wounds upon him. Or had she? She'd seen the look on Alastor's face when they'd parted ways. Who else but a dire could overcome another dire? The anxiety within her spiked and the pale fae internally waged war with herself.

In the end, she couldn't let him suffer.

Without a word, Iki moved towards her healing supplies. She collected clean squares of soft skins, pain killing herbs and a homemade antiseptic that would burn like hell, but would sufficiently clean the wounds. With all of the items placed in a little bucket, Iki sat them beside Deimos and fetch a small bowl of water. She then sat before him, looking silently at the man for any signs of aggression. Looking for any signs that he would turn her away rather than let her tend to his wounds.

"Ikigai"

[Image: VsG8QnS.gif]



Deimos

Elysium
Predator

Intermediate Fighter (45)

Intermediate Hunter (30)

age
6 Years
gender
Male
gems
167
size
Dire wolf
build
Heavy
posts
54
player
Shelby
11-08-2022, 04:03 AM

With Deimos in the state he currently found himself in and with his back to the mouth of the cave, he didn't immediately notice Ikigai's arrival. He was still looking at the ground between his paws, willing himself to get up to at least clean himself up a bit, but before he could manage it he saw a bucket of supplies be sat down beside him and then the retreating paws of the delicate woman he lived with. He glanced up with surprise, watching Ikigai as she went to gather a bowl of water before coming to where he was sitting to join him, sitting across from him with her mercury eyes watching him with understandable uncertainty and distrust. His one unhindered eye met with her gaze as his ears flicked back and guilt clawed at his gut. The words Alastor had said to him about what he had done still replayed in his mind regardless of the fact that he still couldn't clearly remember everything that had taken place. He didn't say anything right away, just searching her gaze for a moment as he tried to understand why she hadn't just turned and left him to suffer when she saw him like this.

Then his singular gaze drifted down to her cut and bruised lip which she had clearly tended to and mended, but it was still visible enough for him to pick out the mark. That seemed to make things start to click. The recognition was visible in his gaze as he slowly remembered pinning her down and shoving her down into the furs, realizing now what Alastor's retaliation had been about. "Ikigai..." he rumbled hoarsely, his large paw beginning to lift toward her cheek before he thought better of it and lowered it back to the ground. He turned his gaze down toward the ground again and struggled to meet her eyes. "Why are you here?" he questioned quietly, his attention fully pulled away from the sharp pain radiating from the deep slashes across the one side of his face and the blood that continued to fall from those wounds that made it impossible to open his eye. "Someone else can deal with this." He didn't want anyone else to see him in this state, but if his options were to force Ikigai to care for him after how he had lost control and destroyed the tentative relationship he had been building with her or to have Manea's woman or someone else tend to his wounds then he would rather take the latter.

"Deimos Medacium"





Ikigai

Elysium
Emissary

Expert Healer (205)

Master Intellectual (240)

Professor

age
2 Years
gender
Female
gems
509
size
Medium
build
Light
posts
173
player
Resin

The Ooze ParticipantThe Ooze - Variation 2
11-19-2022, 12:34 AM

Deimos eventually realized that she was there and though she couldn't quite meat his gaze, she could see the turmoil on his features. It was exactly what she had hoped to see. If he had taken her against her will maliciously, then things would have been much more difficult. There was regret there, and that was good. Iki could blame his actions on the drink. Perhaps Deimos just shouldn't indulge in alcohol. That was what she would tell herself and what she would tell him once she was done tending to the wounds.

Ikigai didn't have to ask what happened. She knew that Alastor had taught the man a lesson and gods... did she hope that this lesson would stick. Yes, she had asked the black and red giant not to take action, but perhaps this was easier. Tending to the purple brute silently would allow them to acclimate to one another's presence after such a traumatic incident. If they spoke about it after, that was fine. Iki didn't even want an apology. She just wanted everything to be okay.

The pale fae dipped a rag into the fresh water and as she wrung it out, she noticed Deimos' paw rising from the ground. Reflexively she stilled, but Iki didn't flinch or pull back. The man spoke her name softly, then asked why she was here. Iki's brows drew together for a moment and his next statement made her feel as though he was going to send her away. That wouldn't be happening, however. He had overpowered her, but Ikigai was no pushover. She would not be sent away from her own den, no matter what he wanted.

When he didn't continue, Iki finally raised her gaze to meet his and she could see the tumultuous emotions within the blue depths. A low exhale pulled from the fae and she sat up on her haunches. One dainty, dexterous paw stretched out to rest upon his broad chest for balance. The rag in the other paw moved up and she gently began cleansing the blood away from his face, her motions as delicate as she could manage to save him from more pain.

He had asked her a question a moment ago and Ikigai decided to answer. As she pulled the red from his amaranthine coat and saw the damage beneath, the woman spoke softly, though there was strength in her voice as well. He hadn't broken her. "You are my mate, are you not?" One dark brow rose in question. "Tending to you is my responsibility and my right." Just as he thought, she didn't want anyone else seeing this. If Ikigai could shield the pack from this drama and negativity, then she would do so. She wouldn't have others looking negatively on Deimos. Even after what he'd done, she would protect his character and reputation.

"Ikigai"

[Image: VsG8QnS.gif]



Deimos

Elysium
Predator

Intermediate Fighter (45)

Intermediate Hunter (30)

age
6 Years
gender
Male
gems
167
size
Dire wolf
build
Heavy
posts
54
player
Shelby
11-22-2022, 04:31 AM

Deimos' one open eye lifted from the ground at his feet when he felt Ikigai's delicate, dexterous paw on his chest. Visible confusion crossed his face as he watched her, holding still as she brought a rag to his face. The rag and her paw that was holding it disappeared from his limited field of view, but it was quickly followed by a reminder of the deep lacerations that ran across the side of his face. The touch of her cleaning of his wounds stung horribly, but he did little more than grimace and kept himself from flinching away. He was too astounded by her willingness and ability to come to his aid despite the fact that he had given her every excuse to break off this arrangement and find far better for herself. Instead, she was here giving him the gift of her talents and skills as a healer to tend to the wounds he received as punishment for hurting her and doing her wrong. It was a selflessness that he couldn't comprehend even in his most aware and able minded state—much less when he was battered, hung over, and woozy from blood loss.

Her words only shocked him further as she insisted that he was in fact her mate and that her tending to him was her responsibility, but not just a responsibility but a right. It felt so inconceivable in his mind that she not only was willingly staying in their relationship, but that this was something she was somehow almost defensive over—as if his suggestion that someone else care for his wounds to spare her having to be near him so soon after the crime he committed against her was somehow offensive to her. He watched her as she worked to clean away the blood from his amethyst fur, quietly considering her for a moment. There was some small part of him, a much smaller and quieter voice now that he wasn't under the influence of the alcohol or so hot off of the incessant pressure from his sister, that still felt a hint of something akin to jealousy toward her. She didn't feel real in the way that she continued to hold herself with such perfection and grace despite the circumstance, putting everything aside for the commitment and the promise that their relationship brought for their families. He had always hoped to find someone that he could at least view as worthy of him, but now he wondered if perhaps he had shot too high and found someone far superior to himself in every conceivable way.

It was a thought that he would have to accept and adjust to, but if she was unwilling to give up on him then he owed it to her to do the same. Whether he was striving to not give up on their relationship or himself he wasn't sure, but he felt like he owed her both of those things. Just as she was pulling the now blood-soaked rag away and was about to shift away to get her other supplies, he lifted his large, bear-like paw toward his chest, catching her delicate paw that had been resting there and placing his paw over hers, holding it against his chest for a moment while his still singular, squinting gaze found her unique, silvered gaze. "Let me make it up to you," he pleaded quietly, his voice still a low, rough rumble, clearly showing the strain on his body both from his own self inflicted ailment and the wounds that Alastor had left behind. "I know I can't undo what I did, but..." He gave her paw a gentle squeeze, his touch so drastically different than it had been the night before—far more akin to the tenderness he had shown her their first night together. "I want to be who you deserve."

"Deimos Medacium"





Ikigai

Elysium
Emissary

Expert Healer (205)

Master Intellectual (240)

Professor

age
2 Years
gender
Female
gems
509
size
Medium
build
Light
posts
173
player
Resin

The Ooze ParticipantThe Ooze - Variation 2
11-24-2022, 12:23 AM

Ever so gently, Ikigai cleaned the blood from the slash marks in the purple mans face. Alastor had done a number on him. A little well deserved, but still she wished that he hadn't done so. She could have handled this in her own fashion. If anything, Alastor surely got his point across rather well. There was no denying that. It was written across Deimos' face. Ikigai had no idea what was running through the man's mind, but she hoped it was regret. She hoped for both of their sakes that it was regret.

As the woman began to draw the rag away to give it a rinse, she felt the large, wide paw of the injured man settle over her own. Marbled eyes rose to meet Deimos' blue gaze. Over their time together, her shyness around him had faded and, though he had forcefully taken her, she was able to maintain their gaze. Dark ears shifted to catch his rough but sincere words. He wanted to make it up to her. That was easy. All he had to do was be good to her. He continued, saying that he wanted to be the man that she deserved.

Gently, Ikigai extracted her paw from his grasp, allowing it to slide away from his chest and settle on the stone floor for just a moment before using both paws to rinse the bloodied rag in the water. The woman balanced on her haunches again as she made another pass over the wounds. "You'll have scars, but you'll heal just fine," she advised him, not yet responding to his words. Iki needed a moment to think and prepare her response. She hadn't brushed his words aside at all. They replayed in her mind as she worked, the rhythmic cleansing of the cuts calming her.

With the wounds clean, Iki draped the bloodied rag across the edge of the bowl. She then took up a small clay vessel full of ointment that she'd crafted herself. Dipping one obsidian pad within, she carefully but thoroughly coated the wounds in the substance. The thick salve would hold the healing against the wound, promoting quick healing. Much more quickly than just leaving it to open air untended. As she applied the salve, her face was rather close to his own and she could feel his slightly labored breaths against the shorter fur of her muzzle. "There is nothing more important to me than family," the woman began, her voice a soft whisper since they were so close to one another. Her gaze stayed locked on the wounds, not wavering for a moment as she worked. "When we agreed to become mates, you became my family, Deimos."

Ikigai let her words sink into the mans skull while she wiped the remnants of the fatty substance from her pads. Taking up a long stretch of thin, clean bandages, Ikigai began wrapping the side of Deimos' face, extending the bandage over his eye, around his ear and back around. He wouldn't be able to see for a few days once the wound began to heal and the tissue swelled, but she would do her best to keep it clean and prevent the scars from being too bad.

"Since you are my family, I will protect you as I protect them. Your best interests will always be in the forefront of my mind, Deimos." Iki tied the bandage in a gentle knot and sat back, both forepaws on the stone as she inspected her work. "My actions reflect upon you just as yours reflect upon me. I will never intentionally bring shame upon you. I will protect you," the woman reiterated, finally meeting his gaze, "but I need you to protect me in turn." A small shake of the head was given before Ikigai carried on speaking. "I know you're capable of being a better man than what you were last night. That's why I'm still here." Tall, obsidian ears flicked backwards for only a moment. "You may never come to love me, as this was a joining of convenience and duty, but please do your best to honor me, as I will do my best to honor you." Ever the epitome of grace and decorum, Ikigai meant every word.

"Ikigai"

[Image: VsG8QnS.gif]



Deimos

Elysium
Predator

Intermediate Fighter (45)

Intermediate Hunter (30)

age
6 Years
gender
Male
gems
167
size
Dire wolf
build
Heavy
posts
54
player
Shelby
11-24-2022, 02:42 AM

He was not a man that usually allowed himself to be raw and unfiltered. Yes, the fact that he was impaired in many ways and forced to look his own actions in the face helped to rip down the walls he tended to keep up around him, but even still he didn't enjoy being in such a vulnerable state. It took a lot for him to get to this place where he currently was, actually admitting fault in himself and pleading with this woman who was showing him a grace and kindness that he didn't deserve. When she didn't respond right away to his pleas to let him to try to mend what he had done, he felt a pang in his chest that he wasn't used to or ready for. A longing, a loss, a strained regret and fear that he had already gone too far. He didn't respond as she returned to her work to clean up his wound, telling him that the wound would scar but that he would heal. In a way this felt like his scarlet letter that he would carry for the rest of his days, but maybe that's what he deserved. He had a bit of comfort in the knowledge that the reason behind these scars would hopefully stay between him, Ikigai, Alastor and likely Manea, but they would be there none of the less and he would always know.

His singular gaze fell back to the stone floor under his feet while she continued her work, holding still and waiting for the sharp stinging from the touch of her rag to pass. Eventually it did and she lowered again to place the towel on the edge of the now bloodied bowl. He glanced toward the clay pot that she dipped her toe into, not questioning her as she proceeded to cover the lacerations in what felt like a thick, soothing balm. There was still no answer from her for a long, painfully quiet moment as she worked, but eventually she did speak, telling him about the importance of family and how becoming his mate had made them family. The fact that she still viewed him as her mate still baffled him, but at this point he would rather just accept the blessings that she had decided to give him rather than continue to question her on them.

That was all she told him and he pondered those words quietly as she finished applying the substance to his face and proceeded to cover one side of his face with bandages. It kept his eye closed, but in a way that was a relief and it kept him from being tempted to try and open it. As she eventually continued about her view on him being his family and sat back to inspect her work, his single aqua eye lingered on her, silent and contemplative as she expressed how she would protect him and would always put his best interests at the front of her mind. He understood the point she was making before she outright mentioned her need for him to protect her in return and his ears flicked a bit with the lingering regret and shame he had for his actions. If she hadn't handled all of this with such grace and kindness and with such a willingness to come back to him regardless of the fact that she had every right not to then maybe he would have felt differently about the situation, but he was seeing a different side of Ikigai in this moment—a side of her that was proving to him that strength wasn't only a physical trait. She was no delicate flower as he had originally thought. Perhaps there was more that he could learn from her than he had expected.

As she finished with her mention of the lack of love in their relationship and the need for them to honor one another, Deimos was quiet for a moment, holding her mercuric gaze before his eye drifted down to where their paws sat close to one another on the floor of the cave. Her delicate, dexterous digits sitting in stark contrast to the massive, clawed, bear-like paw of his own. "I will," he rumbled after a moment, bringing his gaze back to hers. "I promise I will protect and honor you. I... I don't know if I see the better man that you think I can be yet, but for you I want to be that man. It's what you deserve." He resisted the desire to reach out to her again, understanding that his touch was likely not what she desired in that moment. It was understandable, but it didn't stop him from longing to replace every memory and touch that he had given her the night before with better ones. He pulled himself to his paws with a bit of effort, having to stand for a moment to steady himself before he started to slowly move across the den to where their bed was, collapsing onto the thickly piled furs with a heavy, tired sigh. He lifted his eye back toward her again, an invitation to lay with him while he rested lingering on the tip of his tongue before he grit his teeth and lowered his head, resting his head on his paws while exhaustion started to pull him under.

"Deimos Medacium"