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Author Topic: [Pop-up Booth] Ghosts of Past, Present, and Future - Dec 9th - 16th  (Read 766 times)


Perhaps you haven't been as kind as you should have been, this year; perhaps you haven't been generous, or helpful. Perhaps you haven't appreciated your family or your friends. Perhaps that's why you've been thrust into this dream, one that has a strange mix of melancholy and joy, memories that you may cherish or regret....


« Reply #1 on: November 25, 2019, 10:19:43 am »
This pop up booth is based on the theme of Winters Past, Present, and Future, and will run from December 9th to December 16th. It is a simple writing contest that must be completed in three parts, in character as one of your kin. If you are a newbie with 0 kin, you can make up a kin for the purpose of this contest. You should do all three of these prompts in one post, to keep your entries neat and tidy. If you'd like to complete the series of prompts for more than one kin, you should do each kin in its own post.

All three prompts together must add up to 250 words.
If you'd like this to count as a Legendary Solo Requirement, the prompts should add up to 500 words.

Prompt One - The Past

It is a dream, and you know it's a dream -- because when you open your eyes, you are not in the place where you first went to sleep. Instead, you find yourself in one of your memories of a winter from the past. Perhaps this memory is from being a foal, or perhaps it is only last year; perhaps it is a happy memory, or perhaps it is a sad one. Whatever it might be, it should be a time that is accompanied by strong emotion. You cannot change the events of this memory; you can either watch them or play through them exactly as they happened.

Prompt Two - The Future

As the first dream comes to an end, you are launched into a new one -- a vision of a possible winter from the future, based on how you have behaved this season, on the things you have done or have planned. It could be next year, or five years in the future. It could be a happy future or perhaps a sad, lonely one; you can be alone, or with your loved ones. Whatever it might be, it should be a time that is accompanied by strong emotion. You cannot change the events of this memory; you can either watch them or play through them exactly as they happened.

Prompt Three - The Present

Finally, after these strange visions, you wake from the dream to the winter of the present, and find one of the five spectrals above perched on your shoulder. As you notice it, it flits away, and it leaves you to reflect on what you've seen and what that might mean for this winter. Does it leave your kin with new resolve? Does it reassure them that they're on the right track, or that they should change something?


« Reply #2 on: November 25, 2019, 10:21:04 am »
After you've written the above, again, please post them all in one post per kin, using the form below.

Code: [Select]
[b]Your Username:[/b]
[b]Preference List:[/b] corn fancy box, phoe bag, starrydance bag, cheetah, bat, eagle, crane, turtle, owlcat, in order, leaving out any you're not interested in


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Re: [Pop-up Booth] Ghosts of Past, Present, and Future - Dec 9th - 16th
« Reply #3 on: December 10, 2019, 01:27:37 pm »
Your Username: Muffinsbaby
Preference List: eagle, phoe bag, starrydance bag, corn fancy box, turtle

Perfect's vision cleared to find him standing in a wood, but it wasn't where he'd last laid down. Had someone carried him here? Looking around he soon realized that couldn't be as he'd fallen asleep in winter but woke in autumn. He couldn't have slept that long, could he? Confused and dazed her stayed rooted to the spot, looking around until something caught his eye. There, only a few yards away, stood Song. Song! The love of his life. Oh she was even more beautiful than he remembered, but why was she here? No, she wasn't here, this already happened. He watched as her owl circled down to greet her, the owl he'd left with her to keep them together even as she wandered. He listened as she spoke to the owl, his heart breaking all over again. This is the day she left him alone. This is the day his heart shattered. He once wished to hear her voice again, but not like this, not words already spoken. She had told him she was leaving on a journey, that she needed to go forth by herself. He understood - he still understood - and hadn't tried to persuade her to not go. He wanted to cry out, to beg her to stay with him, to not disappear, but his mouth wouldn't open. He stood there silently watching, tears blurring his vision, just like he had that day.

Once he calmed down and his vision cleared he found himself in yet another change of season. This time it was a bright, clear Spring morning, the owls in his care had just received a new batch of owlets and he could hear their cries for food. The sound of new life always made him smile but he couldn't escape the dark, heavy space in his chest. With the recent vision, the pain had returned and closed his eyes to try to gain control of it once more. Slow breaths brought a familiar scent to him and he almost dared not open his eyes. Slowly he opened to a vision of that same doe walking towards him. His heart skipped a beat and his chest tightened. He wanted this vision to be real so badly, but he could feel the sunlight and smell her scent so vividly. She look just as beautiful as he remembered. She'd grown, just as he had, but he would recognize her anywhere. He took a cautious step forward, then another, and soon he was running unable to contain his joy. Her laugh, oh her laugh, it rang like songbirds in his ears as he embraced her. He listened, enraptured, as she regaled him with stories of her journey, of getting lost, of finding what it was she had sought out to do, fully content to just watch and listen. Thought the indescribable joy he felt, he knew that this wasn't real and would end, but he held on as long as he could. They spoke long into the night until, in his dream, he could no longer keep his eyes open and everything fell to darkness once more.

He awoke back in the bitter cold of winter and cursed the torment of this night. He felt the ache anew, longing for his love to return to him, and had begun to believe himself abandoned. Was this his torment or was he sent these dream visions to rekindle his hope of reuniting. Heaving a heavy sigh, he glanced over and what he thought to be an owl perched upon him was an eagle. Was he dreaming still? He must be, for this eagle he could see through! He wasn't given time to thoroughly examine the creature, though, as, after a blink of its glowing eyes, took wing and soon disappeared in the overcast, wintry landscape. Looking around him he shook his head, blinking the sleep from his eyes. The prick of the eagle's talon had been enough to assure him he was awake, but he still didn't quite believe it. He dreamt of Her. He admittedly dreamt of her often but none this vivid. A sliver of hope had been lodged in his heart tonight where he scarcely dared let hope grow. He would wait for her forever and continue to prepare their home for her return, and only hoped that his dream - the dream this strange eagle brought - would someday become real too.

(734 words)


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Re: [Pop-up Booth] Ghosts of Past, Present, and Future - Dec 9th - 16th
« Reply #4 on: December 11, 2019, 01:49:38 pm »
Your Username: Lirilei
Preference List: cheetah, owlcat, turtle, eagle, crane, corn fancy box, starry bag, phoe bag, bat
Sleep had come quickly for Someday, and he'd settled easily. So to wake what felt like mere moments later. Looking around though he didn't see the large rock he'd fallen asleep against, or hear the stream in the distance. No around him was an entirely different look. A tribe of kin surrounding him and he was in a more open location and all around him kin were panicking. It took him longer than it should have to realize what he was seeing. He recalled this memory clearly. Painfully. He was himself, a young foal and around him the adult tribe members were in a panic. They were having troubles with finding enough food to keep them all fed, and not only had they lost several more young in the night, but several adults as well,l leaving several other foals orphaned. He saw kind, pitying eyes turned his way at these words. He didn't understand them. Why were they giving him such sad looks?

Because not only had he lost his parents in the night, but also the filly who he was fast friends with, who he was more than a little fond of even in that age. Best friend and parents gone, and he on his own. He recalled the grief stricken cries of her mother and an accusing 'It should have been him! He lost his parents, he should have been lost with them!' and that anger, that grief it struck him like a physical blow and he recoiled from it, his own grief momentarily forgotten as he tried to hide away from the doe's hurt, angry words.

It made him feel so very small, and even more alone than he now was. It made him wish he'd died too. He'd felt that way ever since that moment, a feeling that was hard to shake away even as a grown buck. That feeling of wretched unwantedness. He aches to comfort his younger self, but he was rooted in place watching as he ran off to the still bodies of his parents and threw himself at them, begging them to come back. All to no avail of course.

Someday sighed and shook his head, and as he did so, the scene shifted, he was no longer in the open land he'd spent many years in growing up. No instead now he was somewhere more forested, and it was almost too dark to make anything out. He could hear himself talking though to someone, and he sounded so happy. So content with his life. He couldn't make out the exact words, just the tone. He also couldn't hear the answers being given but just the same he knew there was someone else there with himself. He heard someone calling for 'dad' and he was able to make out the shadow of himself turn towards the call and he felt tears in his eyes. A family? He had a family of his own? He tried to get closer to the scene but it seemed no matter how close he walked, they stayed just far enough away he couldn't make out the details. His heart felt full and happy, a feeling he'd not known since before he'd lost his parents, and his friend.

He stayed watching for awhile, and once he and his family settled for sleep he too laid down, knowing he could get no closer. No sooner had his head come to rest on his legs, eyes still on the dark, where he knew he and his family lay than everything shifted again, and he startled a little realizing he was right where he should have been, leaning against a large rock, the sound of running water not far off. As he came to his senses he realized there was something on his shoulder and he turned his head and spotted the paws resting on him, and realized it was a Cheetah... but it was more than just a cheetah, he could see through it in the brief glimpse of it he'd gotten before it'd gone running off.

As it did, he felt the years of pain, and loneliness slowly lift from his heart, and he smiled some. His future was waiting for him, and he couldn't live in the past, not anymore. He needed to run towards his future with an open heart. He'd be truly happy again. Someday.

(730 words)


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Re: [Pop-up Booth] Ghosts of Past, Present, and Future - Dec 9th - 16th
« Reply #5 on: December 11, 2019, 07:51:53 pm »
Your Username: Izaeah
Preference List: corn fancy box, starrydance bag, phoe bag, turtle, crane, cheetah, eagle, bat, owlcat

Falling asleep to the warmth of his new companion—friend?—had been nice, Shimmer would not deny that. His stomach wasn't empty, the walk had been invigorating though it had chilled him once more by the time they'd made it to the cave and curling up so close to Hold had been different from when he'd grown up, surrounded by so many others.

Waking up startled him, it made little sense. Shimmers had been so certain that he'd only fallen asleep just moments ago but now, he was standing and the surrounding air was different; the air was much warmer though there was the bare hint of a cold draught. The scents were different as well, and there was no Hold for him to turn to. This had to be a dream.

With a shiver, Shimmers tries to will the dream away, the memory that he knows this is about. His life might be nothing but a world of darkness, but his memories are as sharp and clear as anyone else's. His memories are surrounded by scents and sensations and he knows, just then, that his younger self—how long ago he can barely tell—is seeking the edge of the cave. This younger self is already tired of being reminded that he's different from all the others and an escape from this cave would be bliss but he knows that life out there would likely be the end of him. How would he survive? How would he find his own food when he doesn't even know where he would go? How, how, how?!

In the darkness that surrounds him, the soft echoing sound of hooves come to him and Shimmer can imagine his younger self just slowly coming up along the wall, following an unknown path. Nose in the air, scenting the cooler draught that had taken him there. He doesn't even remember how much time he spent there or how he came to end back deeper into the cave. This memory is faulty and Shimmers doesn't even try to remember. It is bittersweet, and he misses the present.

Just as they came, the sound of the soft clicking hooves fade into the distance and Shimmers knows that somehow, this dream has come to an end and hoping for wakefulness, he pauses, breathing in deeply but while the scents are different, they also hold a tinge of familiarity but it is a recent familiarity.

Shimmers shivers a moment as a draught of cold air brushes him by and yet, it only seems to nip at his legs, his back and neck remaining warm. Puzzled, he takes a few steps, feeling something warm and slightly heavy settled over him. Turning his head back somewhat, he noses at whatever it is that is on his back and all his mind can supply is that it is warm and soft, not quite feathery, perhaps a bit like Hold's fur but longer, it almost feels like. All that truly matters is that it feels warm and contentment finds him.

As moments pass, he finally seems to hear something that brings even more warmth to him, a voice so familiar by its snarky tone that he can't help but grin as he moves into that particular direction. The chilly day is filled with gathering a few extra things to last the winter and quiet discussion that only pleases him as clearly, in whatever moment in time this is, his friend 'outside' friend, snarky or otherwise, still is at his side and it is the only thing that truly seems to matter just then.

Just as the day seems to wear on and they make for the warmth of the cave, Shimmer finds himself startled out of the dream, awakening in a rather jarring way as one moment he was on his way to the cave, warm under his pelt with Hold leading the way, the next, he was outside—when had he stepped outside, was it still a dream?—and he was cold. There was no pelt to keep him warm and that unpleasant thought made him shiver in place.

What stilled him was the sound of flapping wings, a sound so familiar that he relaxed almost instantly at the thought that he was in the company of a bat. They usually were friendly enough, at least back in the caves but it hardly matters. As the chill of the air begins to nip at him more forcefully, Shimmers listens to the sounds around him, tries to find out just how far he might have wandered and how long it might take for him to be found.

Not wanting to end up wandering too much further, he settles down near what seems to be a rock, reflecting on the fact that while he has no clear memories of leaving his cave, his departure, the pretty flower from the booth and Hold's presence are all he needs right at this moment. Whatever the future would hold, this was possibly going to be his home for some time.

He couldn't have asked for anything better.

(849 words)

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Re: [Pop-up Booth] Ghosts of Past, Present, and Future - Dec 9th - 16th
« Reply #6 on: December 11, 2019, 10:22:06 pm »
Your Username: Tara de Draiocht
Preference List: Corn Fancy box,cheetah, eagle, bat, turtle, owlcat, phoe bag, starry bag, crane
What was happening? Spirit could feel himself floating in nothingness why? Last he remembered he was burrowed in his nest for some rest and now this? Suddenly a cold feeling started to creep up his body. There was a quiet whoosh sound and the scenery changed. What... an image of a broken and burnt home cooling in the snow presented itself. A deep sadness seemed to overcome him and fear. This was important he felt but why? It was also familiar. "Oh." He whispered. Now he knew. That was his family den, gone by a careless action. He was the only one to survive. His subconscious had blocked it and now his past was coming back to haunt him with a vengeance.  Alone. That's how he felt from his past.

Just as quickly as the feeling and mental image came, it went away to darkness. "Hello?" His voice seemed to echo eerily. He was alone and anxious now. He wanted to wake up, hoping it was a dream. Now the only sound was his fast panting. Between one blink and the next he was somewhere different. Instead of darkness, it was painfully bright. So bright that it felt like his eyes were burning. But instead of fear and unhappiness he felt confused and somewhat happy. "Huh." Another image appeared in front of him. What was this.. he was surrounded by family and a den. The complete opposite of his past. He tried to come closer to see if he could talk to someone or look inside the den. But the closer he tried to get, the farther away everything moved away. Which was kind of worrying. Was his fate meant for him to be distancing? Did he need to work his attitude and try to be more present instead of making himself aloof. So many questions and no answers were given. At least not yet. A belly drop sensation happen and then a spiral motion pulled him away. He awoke with a half grin on his face. Two complete polar opposite dreams... or visions. Togetherness. That's how he felt from his future? He hoped it was his future, it was a nice feeling anyways.

A sharp sensation woke him up followed by a heavy feeling on his body. He was surrounded. The spectral's were certainly pretty to look at.. ethereal. Spirit blinked and watched as they seemed to disappear. Was this a sign of things to come? How interesting that things come full circle. What did this mean? Maybe it was a lesson of taking the bad with the good. Shaping who we are and what can happen if we learn from said bad times. Spirit hoped he was heading in the right direction in terms of his life decisions, but paths are ever changing. Nothing is set in stone. This certainly had been a trippy night and one of fascinating revelations. Focus. He needed to keep working on himself, if not for himself but for others. You never know whose path you could effect.

[WC: 505]
Current Quest: Here!
I hope you find your peace
RIP Grandparents and Uncle


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Re: [Pop-up Booth] Ghosts of Past, Present, and Future - Dec 9th - 16th
« Reply #7 on: December 15, 2019, 02:39:31 am »
Your Username:Ravenous13

Preference List: corn fancy box, phoe bag, starrydance bag, cheetah, bat, eagle, crane, turtle, owlcat


Totoma curled himself near the base of a tree. With the warm air drifting lazily though managing to slip across his skin along the bald patches on his back. He felt himself floating idly into sleep; the loamy leaf litter beneath his body giving way to a somewhat soothing sort of coolness.

He could hear a heartbeat. Slow. Steady. Heavy. Taking in a breath, he realized all at once that he couldn’t quite breath; in fact it seemed as if the air was being pressed out of him. Trying to move he felt himself struggle futilely against some unseen force. A snort as his frustration grew and adrenaline began to cause little tremors through his limbs. Don’t panic. Stay calm. Breath.

Much easier said than done as his lungs constricted yet again and he let out a near-panicked half squeal of protest. Suddenly he felt himself flung to the ground somewhat roughly. Panic did find him then as he took in a sharp breath, coughing as a bitingly cold air filled his lungs. There was something eerily familiar about this…It was only when he tasted blood that he knew what it was…

The first thing that he had ever tasted was his mother’s blood. His eyes open blearily to the scene around him. The snow was sparse though still there and the through all the intense and new smells around him, he instinctively knew one in particular. Mother. Mother is here. A strange sense of joy and calm filled him as he tried feebly to push himself into a standing position.

Shivering though beginning to warm as he dried; he stared into the brightness until his eyes adjusted to the dimming sunlight around them. He felt light pressure against his head followed by the soft caress across the top of it. Looking upwards he saw a much larger Totoma peering down at him. Her speckled face holding something of a look of wonder.

"You are a little early…I'm glad that you are alive."  A low voice, almost a whisper as his mother nuzzled against his little head gently. How he loved that voice… that touch and he found himself smiling. Her warm body moved to press against him as she curled around him partially. Moments later he wasn’t sure how long; he felt yet another body pressing close as another Totoma, neck fur long and twisted into many long plaits adorned with woven saplings and seeds; curled up beside them. His mother had shifted her position and was now eating something.

"This one looks strong." The buck stated matter-of-factually and rather proudly despite the stern gruffness of his voice. Small Totoma sort of felt that pride and happiness as he looked up at the buck’s pale face that was full of scars. Small Totoma relaxed against the both of them. "Yes. He is from us. Of course he is strong." There was a slight amusement in the does voice.   Puffing himself with pride that at the time he had no idea what the feeling was, he closed his eyes. Early but strong…at the time he’d felt a lot of things but he only knew now what that was.

That was the most connected that he had ever felt with another Totoma. Two of them at that; but they were gone now. Battles had been won and lost and they had made it through, only to succumb to their wounds after battles had waxed too long and food grew too thin. His heart began to ache and he could feel his mouth go dry as he took in a shuddering breath. He tilted his head towards the sky letting out a long and pained bellow into the starry night sky. A low wailing of wind screamed through the trees seeming to sing his sorrow along with him until…

Opening his eyes he found that he was standing at the base of a cliff. Blinking in confusion he tensed turning full circle then back. Where …is this…? A screech above him, told him that he was near an eagle nesting ground. He felt his heartbeat surge. Excitement filled him then and his eyes searched for his quarry. His time had come to acquire a Golden Eagle. His ears flicked toward the sudden rustling whistle from behind him when a voice; that he was sure he recognized somehow yelled to him.”


There was such urgency in the voice he threw his head back stumbling back a few steps. Mere moments later he saw the outstretched talons aimed directly for his face. But it was too late to deflect or turn and searing pain ripped through is face. A pained screech as he bucked and flung his head to the side, feeling his horns connecting with flesh. All at once he found that he was standing behind himself; watching it all. So close yet so distant. He could feel no longer feel the pain but he could still feel the sheer panic in the moment. Beneath it all though he felt a rage bubbling up. The stubborn will that only strengthened with his age urged him fight on. I. Will. Not. Lose!

Around him the sound of that battle grew faint, then silent. He wakes with a start, jerking back as two round eyes mere inches away stared into his face, its nose pressed gently to his. A trilling sort of rumble escaped the creature before him. Cheetah? What is a cheetah doing here? He’d seen no tracks nearby…


Just as quickly as he had noticed the creature however; it was up and bounding into the thick of trees just in his line of sight… trees that he was sure he’d seen directly through the creature. A trick of the light? Glancing around him as the warmth of the midday crept back into his bones, he stretches. The feeling of that last dream still floating about him…but then so was the first. He shook his head, feeling the scrape of his horn against the tree. The dreams felt so real…but he was sure now that he was actually awake. A sigh escapes him…he was relatively content for now…but what had he done to progress his life. He had no tribe…all he had was blood. He still had no name. But…maybe. Maybe someday soon he would find what he was looking for. He stood and shook himself. I wont get anywhere if I don’t take the steps towards it, he thought to himself before settling back into his comfortable dent.  I am strong. I am alive. I will have my name, my tribe…. At least in time. Probably sooner than expected. He thought of the sharp talons tearing into his face and shuddered. Whatever the consequence…I must move forward. His gaze followed the path that the cheetah had gone deeper into the swamp. No paw prints…strange but he felt that he should follow.
Every day is another day.
With the potential to be better
Or potential to be worse
But knowing it could go either way
One should live in the moment and enjoy the little things
Indulge in sunrise, sunfall, and moon and stars
The air we breath
the fact that we are alive
Live free and forward. Enjoy~


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Re: [Pop-up Booth] Ghosts of Past, Present, and Future - Dec 9th - 16th
« Reply #8 on: December 15, 2019, 03:36:31 am »
Your Username: Ruriska
Preference List: corn fancy box, phoe bag, starrydance bag, turtle, cheetah, bat, eagle, crane, owlcat

They were singing.

Buried Alive woke to it, vibrations quivering through his chest. This was a sound he had not heard for a very long time. It was an ancient sound, echoing down the long caverns of their underground home, a song joined by Zikwa after Zikwa. 

He wanted to join them, to lift his voice as he had many winters after this one.

But back then he hadn’t and in this dream he could only do as he had done.

On this particular day he had been too young, his voice untried and his nose still wet. He could feel that too, in the absence of the many aches he had grown accustomed to in his twilight years and a different weakness to his limbs. How many years ago was this? Many, many, many. There was no word for it.

There was warmth all around him. They glowed, so bright, even with the skin that covered his eyes. His mothers, fathers, brothers and sisters, aunts and uncles. Family.

This was the coldest day, they told him.

The very middle of winter, a time when somewhere above snow fell and cold winds blew. How strange!

Deep below there was only the chill but huddled within the bodies and limbs of his loved ones, Buried Alive did not feel it.

Their song rang louder - a farewell to those who had passed on, a welcome to those who would soon be born and the simple joy of being together. A new year began now.

Oh, how he longed to sing with them again!

It still lingered in his ears as the world changed around him and he woke to something new. Something Buried Alive understood intrinsically this was a path he would one day take.

He was dying.

Death rattled in his lungs with each breath, ice in his chest like claws. All of him ached.

But his heart felt no fear.

What little sight he had was gone but he felt them around him, his family. The one he had made above the ground with his beloved Take Root. The children they had borne to others and then brought together. There were other scents and voice he didn’t know but recognized anyway as family. Together they cried and talked and whispered around him.

And they waited.

They would sing for him.

When he finally gave his last breath and the cold claimed him, when the ache finally let him be and his soul had finished its journey, they would sing and he would rest.

There was no greater fate.

Buried Alive lifted his head wistfully from his sleep, the visions still playing through his mind, songs still lingering in his ears. Something moved, a weight on his shoulder. But as he turned his head, the creature was already gone. Wind brushed his cheek and soundless wings took flight. A bat. He knew that smell. Though there had been something strange about it.

He rose slowly, his bones creaking.

As he ruminated over his dreams, he was reminded by how blessed he was.

The past had given him many wonderful things, including a strong sense of peace and belonging. It was also his past that gave his future meaning. There was no fear of death in his heart. It was simply the end of a long journey through many lifetimes.

But that did not mean he was eager for that path.

Buried Alive vowed to endure as long as he could.

So that he could love and adore his family and stay beside them.

There was still much he could give to the Swamp. So many stories and songs.

He was old.

But he was not so old yet that winter would claim him.

One day but not for many, many, many.


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Re: [Pop-up Booth] Ghosts of Past, Present, and Future - Dec 9th - 16th
« Reply #9 on: December 15, 2019, 03:00:57 pm »
Your Username: Gl!tch~
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The touch of a cold snowflake drifting onto her nose startled her awake. It did not snow on the sand bar! Tidal Terror came to with a grunt, and looked around. A blanket of snow as far as the eye could see, sloping upwards and downwards sharply. She blinked at the sight.

How did she manage to end up in the mountains, so far from home?

Bewildered, she stared to stand. As she did so, a couple of foals ran through her legs. Odd that she didn't feel them bash into her, or see them bounce backwards off her flank. In fact, they did not seem to notice her at all!

The totoma foals giggled, continuing to chase each other, occasionally kicking up snow in each other's faces. One, in fact, was colored exactly like herself.

"You there!" Tidal Terror called out, just to be ignored. It would not be the first time, but she was so loud that others often at least reacted to the sound of her voice.

Instead, they continued to play, a red totoma foal with a miniature version of herself. At one point, the younger blue totoma saw an opening and head-butted the other child's side, making them fall over in the snow. The blue totoma laughed, then, after a moment, started to see if the other foal was all right. She even started to assist in helping the red foal up.

"Stop!" a voice called from behind Tidal Terror, then another form passed through her. Large, imposing, similar in some colorations to Tidal Terror's own. He glared down at the children. "You do not help a downed enemy. It gives them the chance to strike back!"

"But he's not my enemy, Father..." the young blue totoma whined and shuffled her hooves.

"You never know when that will change. Come, now. The snow is picking up." Without waiting to see if the foals were following, he turned and started to leave.

Tidal Terror just glared him down. She looked back towards the foals, opening her mouth to say something to them, but they only ran through her once more.

She sighed and began to turn away.

As she opened her eyes again, she found a salty smell on the air and the feeling of sand underneath her hooves. Home again! Tidal Terror stepped forward, relieved.

She heard some voices nearby, the sounds of excitement. Everyone excited for the winter festival, she was sure.

As the blue totoma approached, she found an alarming sight. Another copy of herself, but around her current age. This Tidal Terror laughed and moved to corral some totoma foals she couldn't recognize, but seemed similar in appearance to her own self. They, like the foals before, were caught up in play.

"Come now, or you'll miss the festival!" the other Tidal Terror gently chided, guiding the foals along in their excitement. Eventually the group walked through the watching Tidal Terror, those totoma as ignorant of her as the previous group had been.

She watched in bewilderment as they disappeared. "...Odd," was all she had to say about that.

And, then, again, she felt the cold touch of a snowflake on her nose.

Tidal Terror lurched up from her sleeping position on her side. Her she was, in her usual spot, sleeping on the sand bar. A soft snow fell from the sky, but nothing that would pile up, or even last for very long.

Something shifted next to her, and she looked over to see something like a turtle by her side. The ghost-like creature gave her one little blink before dragging itself out to the surf.

Much like the turtle, she resolved to continue on being herself and the best self that she could be.

But for now, maybe an actual restful sleep.


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Re: [Pop-up Booth] Ghosts of Past, Present, and Future - Dec 9th - 16th
« Reply #10 on: December 16, 2019, 06:28:45 am »
Your Username: Mima
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She's huddled tight against her tribemates, shivering. Still small and having never lived through a winter before, she's gone from relatively fat and happy to absolutely drenched and miserable in moments. The night sky whose stars she once followed and traced designs on within her mind is covered up in grey clouds, sheets of dark rain pouring down like the night itself is falling to earth. Without the light of the moon shining on the open desert, the world is profoundly dark- and though she does not see her mother, she hears her, as she begins a lullaby.

"Only when the stars are gone,
do you recall their shine.
Far apart you may live on,
but the memory's forever mine."

Mother's voice alone is nearly swept up in the beat of the rain. But, gradually, the voices of the other acha began to rise up, each singing along in their own words. Though initially she would have called this simply a cacophony, she would later be told it was called a "round." It was hard to follow any one string of words, but she did pick out an interesting few. Many sung about the winter rains, a lot about family... But also a lot about not being able to see your family any more. Especially in reference to the swamp.

She'd heard about the swamp before, but not much. That it's so far away they may never return.

Enraptured, she forgets the cold, listening on in snippets and bits as she seems to drift in and out of waking.

"What was the desert like?"

As her eyes open, she finds herself not pressed up against dozens of other acha- instead, only one sits by her side. Sky Full of Tears looks up at her expectantly, his eyes full of admiration. She's not sure if she deserves it.

But even if she doesn't, she'd deserve it even less if she let him down. And so, she takes a deep breath in.

"Inescapably large," she begins. "Here, your line of sight is probably blocked by trees most of the time, right? There isn't much to block your vision in the desert. It seems as though you can see all the way to the edges of the world- though, of course, that isn't true. There is more in the world than any one kin could even hope to see with their own eyes."

You're one to talk, she thought.

But Sky just kept on smiling.

"It's a lot like the swamp in some ways, and not at all like it in others. It has a rainy season right about now, too- but never rainy enough anything ends up underwater, like it does here." As she explained, his ears perked up a little, tail thumping against the ground. Of course, his dream had been of one of the more fleeting, pleasant summer storms, but the information still intrigued him. "And so, when it got cold during the nights, we'd all gather up close to each other like this-" she scooted a bit closer to him, enough to give him a motherly(?) bonk on the head with her own head, which made him laugh.

"And we'd sing, to keep the mood up."

"...What sort of songs?"

"Hm... Whatever someone started singing, really. Some folks made up their own words to the melody, I think. Let me try to remember..."

She wasn't sure if it was a memory, or if she was making it up, but still, she lifted her voice, to the tune she recalled from long ago.

"Through the harshest heat,
and over mountains of stone,
still I know your heart must beat,
so that means I'm not alone-"

As she felt her son's neck droop as he fell asleep, she thought back again-

Back to reality, as her eyes opened once more- finding that where her son had been beside her, now sat a great cat- its glowing eyes seeming to stare directly into her heart.

Playfully, it leapt to its feet, pausing for only a moment to look back at her. Then, the moment she could process what was going on, it dashed away into the grey winter- faster than any kin could hope to run.

So too did she look back over her shoulder, at Fading Beauty and Sky Full of Tears as they slept- curled up together exactly like her own family used to. And, wistfully, she smiled-

Before picking up her hooves and giving chase, even if she couldn't see what it was she was after.

"No matter how far away, my dear,
you're always inside my heart.
Even if you aren't right here,
we won't truly be apart."

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Re: [Pop-up Booth] Ghosts of Past, Present, and Future - Dec 9th - 16th
« Reply #11 on: December 16, 2019, 10:10:07 pm »
Your Username: Scaramouche Fandango
Preference List: eagle, owlcat, cheetah, crane, turtle, corn fancy box, bat, phoe bag, starrydance bag,

Real Big Fish, having drifted off to sleep, awoke in a snowbank. It wasn’t where she’d dropped off; she hadn’t been to this place in ages, although she could remember it like it was yesterday. She’d seen this place in her last winter, her last real winter. What passed for winter in the swamp was practically the spring thaw. She was lucky if the ice froze over, and perhaps she’d grown soft from the absence of shrieking winds and sheer cold. But here, in her dream, the chill came from what she knew was going to come next. Had she known back then what the Ache was, what it would do to her, she might not have left.

But in the dream, she was mourning something else. Not the mountains, but her grandmother. The tough old doe had passed in the fall, and the hurt of it was too great for Fish to bear. Her grandmother had been far more than just her mother’s mother; she’d been her friend, her confidant, her teacher, her leader. Her grandmother had given her her name, and to have her taken away… not even by battle, not even battle with an illness.

She’d lost her grandmother to sleep. To dreams. One day she didn’t wake up, and suddenly home didn’t feel like home at all. She knew it never would again, and that ache, that persistent sense of loss- it dulled over time, yes, but in the dream, she felt it all over again. She’d gone through the motions that winter, helping feed her family- but all the joy she took in finding food in winter, in braving the mountain weather, in meeting that challenge was gone.

So she left.

Not yet in this dream, but as Real Big Fish saw herself alone, numb from the cold ‘round her heart, she felt the profundity of that loss once again. How long had it been until she was able to feel anything other than bleak? How long did she feel that uncertainty of loneliness? When did she get her footing back, find her place in the world and be certain of it once more? She didn’t remember getting her emotions back, and in this dreamscape, she felt certain she never would.

As she watched herself trudge through the winter snow, half-heartedly scraping at lichens, snow flurries sped past her face. The world turned white, and when the snowy vision cleared, she saw the face of a Totoma doe, grizzled and grey. She knew instinctively this would be the last year of the doe’s life, the last winter she’d ever face. Her armor was battered, battle-scarered, beautiful. Her eyes were pale- not deadened with the film of old age, but lightened with wisdom. The doe was walking alone on the ice, and just as certain as she was that this was the doe’s last winter, Real Big Fish knew the doe was herself. So I do get old, she thought. She watched as she trod alone across the ice, smiling at her chipped armor. Just like her grandmother.

Real Big Fish- not the real one, not this present one, but the one who was soon to pass, scraped powdery snow off the ice’s surface. With a calculated strike, she plunged a front hoof through, then stomped the ice around it, chipping it into the frigid water. When the hole was sufficiently large, she whistled, a long, piercing call.

And that was when they came, bounding across the snow-covered ice. They followed in her tracks, for they knew the path was safe.

Lambs, half a dozen of them, obviously not her children. She was far too old for that these days. But there was a resemblance- she saw herself in each of them. Some young from other species, fillies and colts from Kimeti and Acha and Kiokote, even a naked Zikwa- brave against the cold. That one shivered and huddled against its companion, an eaglehound. Several animals followed, companions of these little ones, and as they formed an arc around her, she paitently waited for them to settle in.

For the first time, the old doe spoke. “All right, kids. Watch your grandmother work!” She plunged her face into the ice, and came back up almost effortlessly, a silvery fish flopping against her, struggling and fighting, like she no longer felt the need to. With a snap, she expertly ended her prey’s suffering, and she dropped in front of her clustered descendants. “This is how we fish in the winter. Even here in the swamp, winter is a challenge, and now I’ll teach you as my own grandmother taught me. Who knows, you take to this and you might earn your names, little lambs! I’m sure I told you how I earned mine. Once, I caught this enormous pike, and I took it to my grandmother…”

When she awoke, it was with a smile. She felt… powerful, and…

She felt like a Totoma. What it really mant to be a Totoma, possessed with the security of identity and place in the world. When she’d lost her grandmother, she’d lost faith in the cycles of reality- death was a part of life, and she hadn’t wanted to admit that. But all kin must lose their family eventually, must take that last walk across the ice alone. What came after- that was what you could change. You could create a path to follow. Her grandmother had done that for her, and when she left the mountains, she’d forged her own way. But that was her grandmother’s hoofprints- she’d taught Fish to be self-sufficient, to be brave and bold, and to never back down. She would continue on. She would fish, and teach others to fish. She would hunt, and teach others to hunt. She would share that part of herself, and she would embrace it- as she had done. As she would always do. She was Totoma, after all.

She almost didn’t notice the ghostly eagle perched on her armor; as it flapped its wings, the cold gust of air was the first she saw of it. It rose in the air effortlessly, and as she watched it circle away into the sky, she shook herself from slumber and rose, resolute. She had a lot to share. A lot to teach. A lot to do.


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Re: [Pop-up Booth] Ghosts of Past, Present, and Future - Dec 9th - 16th
« Reply #12 on: December 16, 2019, 11:14:50 pm »
Your Username: AstoriaFallen
Preference List: Cheetah, Eagle, corn fancy box, phoe bag,  starrydance bag, bat, crane

Carry You With Me was a little confused, she had been just been awake right? She was usually a sound sleeper but now she was watching as she was outside of herself, watching as a little red figure cowered in the snow, not far from where her younger self stood. She remembered this day a great deal, she was still a young filly herself then and curious about everything. She watched as the red figure began to stir and her response had been to crouch low and stalk towards it slowly, because she had never seen a foxbun before and had reacted in a rather silly manner but still. It had been a moment of great joy for her, mainly because that was when her and the foxbun became fast friends and she had someone to call her own. Smiling she couldn't help but feel the warmth that enveloped her soul that day, and it was still the same to this day. Especially since it had been during a time of her life when she felt all alone, and on that day she had been given a life long companion.

Watching as her past self got to know the red creature better the image began to fade away and she she was launched into something different.

She looked older, mainly because of the grey furs that began to litter her features, and the way she walked, slower than usual. She was alone though. Frowning she moved forward and watched as she approached a small mound earth, it was new. The look on her face told her all she needed to know though, her companion was gone from this world, and her likely soon along with it. Sorrow seeped deep into her chest as the thought of losing her friend now wasn't something she ever wanted to know, though at the same time her older self seemed happy still? They'd had a long life together so the passing, while sad, had been one filled with memories to cherish always. Knowing then that she needed to cherish things as they came instead of worrying about what's to come she vowed that she'd live in the moment from then on.

Awaking from those visions she felt the small weight of something upon her shoulder and realized it was the spectral eagle. As it flew away she thought about the things she had seen and how they'd made her feel and she knew that she'd live for each day, cherish those who were dear to her and learn to accept what cannot be changed.
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Re: [Pop-up Booth] Ghosts of Past, Present, and Future - Dec 9th - 16th
« Reply #13 on: December 16, 2019, 11:57:46 pm »
Your Username: lolternative
Preference List: corn fancy box, cheetah, turtle, owlcat, bat, eagle, cranephoe bag, starrydance bag
Entry: Blooming Mad was puzzled to find herself awake when she was certain she had only just fallen asleep. Upon further inspection, she realised that she was in fact, still sleeping, as she had woken up somewhere different to where she had fallen asleep. The place was familiar to her, though she couldn't quite pinpoint why. The wind was blowing a gale, bringing snow down from the mountains and she shivered, crunching through piles as she studied her surroundings. It was a dream, yes, but a dream of a memory - as soon as the cold wings blew over her she remembered this place from when she was a foal. It was her garden. One she had spent all summer, spring and fall tending to, loving and nurturing all manner of bushes and flowers and even a small tree. But the winter was harsh and the cold winds blew and stripped the leaves and flowers and froze the sprouts and stems until they shattered.

She watched as it happened again, a strong breeze blowing away the last remnants of her garden, the small sapling not strong enough to brace against it; too brittle. It was the first time she had experienced loss, true loss and it was the first day she came to loathe winter.

With the last gust of wind, she is brought elsewhere and this time she knows it is not a memory because she does not recognise anyone around her, though they all call her with familiarity. It is winter and the winds are blowing, but she does not seem bothered or cold. She is surrounded by many - some baring her resemblance and they all present each other with gifts and smiles and laughter. Beside her is a small pile of seeds that grows even larger as more kin come to give greetings and promise of helping her come Spring. She often lets herself forget that Spring follows Winter and that new life will emerge with the warmth of the sun. It is easy to get lost in the memory of her first garden and the cold wiping it away like a smudge. She doesn't seem to forget now - whenever this is - and the wind blows but she does not shiver or flinch.

Blooming awakes with a start, finding a cheetah perched near her shoulder, watching her coolly for a moment, its eyes shifting in an eerie glow. Blooming notices it carefully, noticing the light shift around it and through it. She opens her mouth to speak and it is off, disappearing into the trees in near silence. Her mouth closes and she gives everything careful consideration. It must have been a sign, she concludes; too coincidental for anything else. Winter is inevitable; but she is not a plant - she does not have to be wiped away with the snow and bloom again in Spring. She inhales deeply, the air is crisp and makes her nose run but she gives a soft smile; there is warmth to be found in Winter.


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Re: [Pop-up Booth] Ghosts of Past, Present, and Future - Dec 9th - 16th
« Reply #14 on: December 16, 2019, 11:58:11 pm »
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She takes her place, tentatively, as she does each night beside Keepsake and Heritage. Their children settle themselves in no particular place and she still feels like she is intruding on this family that is not hers. She is an interloper and, though she has been invited, she still doesn't feel that she is at home here.

She feels at home with Keepsake and there are wasps and butterflies that alight in her stomach when Heritage comes near but—she lets out a sigh and closes her eyes. Tomorrow is another day to find her place, in this family and in this world. Another day to find herself. She has spent too long as a demurring sister, the protector of the pack leader, that she has lost who she is without that sister. The one she hasn't seen in too long.

The past...

Lightning Strike is cold despite the weight that lies on top of her. She blinks her eyes open and the heart inside her chest begins to race. She is alone and naked and buried in snow. It should warm her but instead she feels frozen from the inside out. She knows, somewhere in her mind, that it is a dream but that doesn't stop her from bolting upright and shaking the snow from herself. She isn't used to coldness and she hates it too much to tolerate it, even in a dream.

She takes a couple of moments to shake herself free from any linger snowflakes and cannot help the terror of not having her pelt along her back. It has been her comfort and her identity for far too long because, unlike her sister and unlike Heritage, she looks nothing like a wolf. And it stings, still. Worsens into a pain that makes her body go rigid when she realizes that this is a memory. One that haunts her and torments yet sustains her still.

She is tiny, eyes shut, and plain as a newborn pup shivering the snow. Next to her is a body of more fur, more warmth, that is also blind. It is her sister and they are alone in the snow that blankets this land. There is no mother; there is no father. There is only them. And it's this moment that she knew she was different from her sister because she was cold and the body next to her was warm and soft. Even then, she was a wolf, her sister. And Lightning Strike has never been that certain that she is the same because she is not. She's different.

Even now, watching the two bodies huddle together and begin to find voices, she cries. It hurts to be so uncertain and so afraid and so tiny. It hurts to be abandoned, then and now. It hurts to see that she is no more found than she is lost today as she was then. She's lived and, somehow, only further vanished into being no one and nothing. She gave her sister her breath and her love, her loyalty and devotion; her sister took that mantle proudly and used it to feed a growing rage until Lightning Strike was more dead than alive.

She squeezes her eyes shut against the vision then buries her face into the snow. It stings and hurts but so does her heart. Even with her sobs, she can hear voices. Her voice. Her sister's voice. The wolves howling in the distance. But she refuses to look again. She can't and she won't. She doesn't.

The future...

The screaming forces her to open her eyes and gone is the snow that threatens to kill her. Instead there is darkness in the cover of a cave. Despite the blackness of night, the scene before her is somehow illuminated as if she is supposed to see this. And even as she sees it, she feels confusion.

There is a small commotion outside the cave but it is the two figures—Keepsake and herself—that hold her attention. She is screaming, inconsolable, and Keepsake is doing all she can to keep the other doe still. And yet the wailing, it rocks the earth itself and she doesn't want to know anything more about this vision. She doesn't. And still her eyes refuse to close because her heart is lurching towards this version of herself that is lost in grief. She takes a breath and turns her back on it, counts the beats of her heart to remind herself this is nothing but a dream.

Behind her, Heritage sits with wilted ears and such sorrow in his eyes that she knows what is happening now. The grief sinks like a rock into her gut, hard and hot. She feels it more than sees it. The emptiness that wells within and threatens to forcibly crawl from her mouth like venom. And she has to steel herself to turn around. The vision won't let her leave and she doesn't understand why, this is something that no one will ever understand why.

Death is inevitable. It comes for all living things sooner or later. It is a celebration and a cycle; it is grief and a remnant. And as she turns to take in the tragedy, she wonders what the point of these dreams is. The latter made her cry; this one makes her want to run. Off a cliff so that this future can never happen.

Lightning Strike turns and takes small measured steps towards herself. She walks and walks and then lies down besides herself with all the gentleness of a spring breeze. And though the she in this vision cannot see or hear or feel her, she tries to flood all her sorrow and love and emotion into the future that she hopes will never be. She cannot imagine foals, not from her, and yet the foal is there all the same.

It is pale and it is not alive. And she doesn't cry. She screams and finds the fire that is her sister within her heart. She rises and yells and shrieks and kicks and—it makes no difference. She still tears the dream asunder until she is surrounded by only black and the only sound is her own voice screaming into a void of emptiness.

The present...

Lightning Strike wakes up, frazzled and hoarse, where she fell asleep. She is sheltered within her pelt once more but there is a coolness and a pressure that bears down on her shoulder. She glances up to find white piercing eyes that are encompassed in a green face. The turtle stares at her and then, as if the air is water, begins to swim away. The thought to follow it flares then is whisked away by the simple act of breathing because she knows she won't be able to. She knows she won't find it again.

She remembers the dreams. She is sure she won't ever be able to forget them. And yet she doesn't know how to move forward or even if she should. There was misery in her past; there was misery in the future. She doesn't believe misery is her destiny, though. There are reasons for the journeys the Motherfather presents all kin. She looks at the kin around her, these puppies that Keepsake and Heritage have between them.

It was only yesterday that Keepsake was fawning over the children, reminiscing about foals that grew into colts and fillies. It is no secret that Keepsake wants more children but her smile is coy about it. She wants children but she has some other desire, too, that she hasn't quite revealed to anyone else. And Lightning Strike wonders if that is why she dreamed.

Is it time to move on? Is she going to bring heartbreak to this family around her? There are too many interpretations. It sticks though how odd it is to have one child. Two or three is far more common. How strange would it be to have only one... One is alone and kin are so seldom alone at all. There is always the Motherfather. And while foals do die, surely a Legendary could ensure a clutch's health should they be found and asked. Even then, she has no one to have children with so what is the worry of a future that cannot be?

With a yawn, she decides that it is not to be worried about now. It will stay with her and she will puzzle over it a little each day but she is not having children tonight or probably ever, if she's honest. Maybe it means that she is not fit to be a mother and there's nothing wrong with that. Many kin don't have children at all. Visions are only visions, after all. They are not set in stone. And maybe that's the point of it all. Visions are not fixed; she has choices to make that can and will change her own life and those around her. All she has to do is live each day.