Spring under a bright, blue sky… The glow of the afternoon sun cascaded over the brown and orange earth; the ground got its color from the constant heat blasting and the vast quantities of copper within the earth. Warm, humid breezes blew from the dozens and dozens of geysers throughout the high, rugged, rocky mountains and flat plains of the area. (Yet in the winter, snow came often and it came hard due to the nearby mountains; snow would also come year-round at random outside of the winter, once again because of the mountains.)
Thanks to the warmth and frequency of the geysers, many a unique plant and animal bred here; nature abounded and flourished here, despite the sacred simplicity one might see at first. Of the plants, there were short brown grasses, brown root-like flowers, known as the Snow Cap, with many pale petals, like the canopy of a snow-cloaked tree, near the many geyser pools, and lily pad-esque flowers that floated along the surface of the waters with long, protruding crimson stamens. Wildlife here remained competitive, but straightforward. Bright brown and elegant bodies pranced over the plains and flicked their tails as they rammed each other with short, closely-grouped antlers and hard facial horns; these were the picilope. Large, bulky, and broad-shouldered beasts armored in thick, dark leathery and hairy hides lumbered to and fro across the warm ground searching for food with nasal horns at the ready to gore any picilope or tempted predators; these walking fortresses were armatherium. Every environment must have their predators, and this one’s happened to be the moorstalkers. Large, tusked felines, cloaked in a hide colored like old, grey wood, which stalked the flat lands and occasionally pounced up a mountainside, were always ready to attack potential prey and tear them to shreds with their large tusks, fangs, and claws.
Between the geysers, mountains, fauna, and wildlife, one would be hard-pressed to find a similar environment. Once you arrived here, you’d be astounded by the sheer beauty and purity of the land. Yet in spite of the beauty, many a danger lay here. This was the Blasting Moors, a place not entirely for the faint of heart.
The pair slinked in search of their target. Their talons dug deep into the soft ground of the Blasting Moors. Lean, muscular bodies covered in thick fur and frilled feathers along their necks, legs, and pronounced bushy tails flex with each step taken. One pair of orange eyes and another of crimson looked onward for confirmation of a target. Hunters they were, ketucari with their trademark talons, fangs, and tusks, although their goal wasn’t to kill: It was far stranger.
“A fool’s errand from a fool… does that make us fools for accepting the words of a fool then? I suppose that’d be no different our usual circumstance, eh, Sham?” Ohm asked his companion, his voice cordial, yet dry. Ohm was the lighter of the two, in terms of temperament and hue. Charcoal grey dominated his body while snow white peeked in along his breast, underbelly tail, snout, and toes. But more than simply grey characterized the ketucari’s form; old, tan, faded scars of every size and pattern covered him like an extra layer, half-forgotten memories from a lifetime of harsh combat. Pale orange eyes like amber belonged to Ohm, as did a rather strange silver and aqua bracelet attached to his hind left paw.
“… If you worked half as much as you yap, I’m sure you’d have reason to believe yourself as high and mighty as you do now, Ohm,” Shamdono shot back at Ohm with toxin from both pink tongue and red eyes. A ketucari of blackened charcoal and ashen palor offset by tan feathers along the back of his neck with a pension for seriousness, someone like Shamdono would find such a description more than satisfactory; anything else would only be trivial.
“Hmph, I’d think you’d appreciate some form of chat after a long silence, but evidently there’s no silence too long for you.”
“Nor is there one too short for you.”
“And I supposed you’d have me say nothing as I do nothing and you take all the glory?”
“Hardly, what good would my pawn be to not play his part? The silence would do you plenty of good though, save me from one too many headaches.”
“Not when you need to ram your head into the side of armatherium and tip it over, Sham, but at least it provides me with something to find amusement from.”
“Well don’t laugh too soon, fool.” Ohm at last noticed what Shamdono was referring to: The first armatherium they’d seen all day, munching on brown grass with its back to the pair of ketucari, but it was easily double their height and must’ve weighed at least more than ten times than they did, like most armatherium. “You might find yourself with a headache yourself by the time we’re done here.”
The two slowly crept closer to the unawares beast. “I’m going to kill that bastard Shachath,” Ohm muttered under his breath.
“Don’t bother; he has far more experience than you do.”
“Says you, I could take him; none can best me.”
“His stat sheet would beg to disagree.”
“Never mind, you. Now can you please be useful and give me a hand?”
“Only if you hold up your end, Sham.” Charcoal light and charcoal dark were both on at the same end of the armatherium’s rear. Shamdono nodded his head: Go. Ohm followed the signal. Both of the ketucari ran at the beast at their full speeds with nothing held back. With the force of two small cannons, Ohm and Shamdono knocked into the oblivious armatherium with a resounding crash as they both felt their brains knock against their skulls and their resulting vision blurred for a fraction of a moment. At first nothing happened, aside from the sudden surprise yelp of a roar that came from the creature, but within a moment it was felled like a tree (its crash certainly sounded like one). The awkward animal had a hard time of fixing itself, so the ketucari gazed on at their handiwork with varying degrees of entertainment.
“That was easier than I thought,” Ohm admitted. “Guess we’re better than we thought.”
“I do believe Shachath intended for only one person to do his request, Ohm,” Shamdono mused to his partner.
“Don’t ruin this for me, Sham…”
After a few minutes, the two ketucari departed the still-downed armatherium; having long since grown bored of it, and began their tedious return to Shachath. Not too long into their silence, Ohm asked his companion a question. “You think we should tell him that we both rammed into that thing?”
“… No… just tell him what’s important.”