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Census
The Pridelanders
Scar & Zira
♂04 ♀05

The Outlanders
Kiume & --
♂04 ♀02

The Coldlanders
Ismahel & --
♂03 ♀03

The Shadowlanders
Ni & Abuto
♂07 ♀03

The Desertlanders
-- & Quanna
♂02 ♀03

The Lowlanders
Nyota & Duara
♂02 ♀09

The Ashlanders
Nako & Heshima
♂02 ♀03

The Rogues
♂04 ♀04

The Other Species
♂03 ♀00

Total: 63
♂31 ♀32

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 Finding Beauty Is Easy

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Kifu

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PostSubject: Finding Beauty Is Easy   Sat Jun 30, 2012 7:20 pm

Kifu had been wary of leaving Heshima's side at first but once he hadn't been killed in his sleep by Nako or Baset he felt confident enough to be able to explore his new home. He'd wandered the ashy fields that morning, rolling in them for fun and reveling in the black smears they left on his coat, it was probably unbecoming but the prince hadn't been able to just have fun in a while and he thought he deserved it. He'd made what he assumed with an 'ash angel' at one point and had walked away quite proud of himself.

So far he hadn't run into anyone else that day, not Nako or Baset and his mother was as far as he knew still resting. He didn't like not keeping an eye on her but he knew she could take care of herself and she wasn't in any immediate danger, Nako's kindness so far had prove genuine and Kifu had decided that for now he would trust the older male. His paws instinctively lead him towards a new smell, an earthy smell, one that he could place as one he'd scented in the Lowlands when they had passed through them to get to Malkia Pass. He liked the Ashlands but the promise of trees to climb and sharpen his claws on was too tempting to pass up and he sped up to a light jog in excitement.

Nasika Valley spread below the youth when he reached the top of a charred hill and he was breathless. The valley was beautiful, with a definite influence from the neighboring territory and Kifu let out a joyful laugh before bounding towards the bottom rather clumsily. He still wasn't the most graceful lion out there and his large paws often tripped him up, this time he managed to keep his balanced and make it all the way to the bottom unscathed. He grinned and swaggered through the valley taking in all of the sighs with pale jade eyes, eyes that showed nothing of the demonic father they had been taken from.

A furtive look told him he was alone and a quick sniff of the air confirmed it, with a nod he jumped up onto a protruding boulder and puffed his chest out. "I King Kifu will do everything in my power to keep the Ashlands safe, not a lioness or cub will go hungry on my watch" he said to an invisible audience and tried his best to look serious and fierce. He might not be King yet but who said he couldn't practice a coronation speech? He probably would have felt silly if someone saw him but last time he'd checked he was alone and he paced the rock, pretending to be thinking and started a conversation with his invisible majordomo about a rebel rogue pride threatening their territory.

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Zivia

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PostSubject: Re: Finding Beauty Is Easy   Tue Jul 03, 2012 12:10 am

Zivia was the newest addition to the little Ashlanders pride. In comparison to the Outlands, the Ashlands was indeed a small pride. Zivia had only been here a few days, but had not yet talked to any of the lions within her new pride other than the King, Nako. She'd been fearful that first night and barely slept a wink, though after she'd experienced no dangers during the nights she'd soon relaxed and had now slept well. Zivia let out a yawn and stretched her body out as she slowly lifted her body up and stared around her. The Ashlands wasn't exactly the most beautiful place, but her mother had always told her that 'true beauty came from within'.

She moved out of the Den and looked up at the Priderock-like figure that was their home. Naturally, Zivia had never seen Priderock and therefore found no resemblance between this and the real deal. She'd never ventured far enough, and the Pridelands had always been portrayed as a place to fear. Zivia had at first wondered if she could go see the other lands she'd heard of after fleeing her horrible past in the Outlands, but now that she had found the Ashlands she no longer wished to be anywhere else. Zivia turned her head away from the figure and decided that today, she would explore her new home.

Zivia, at first, set off at a casual walk as she looked around and peered here and there. Eventually though, a feeling of safety mixed with freedom of being in her own lands where she was sure no harm in the form of a lion would befall her, she set off at a steady run which soon turned into a full out sprint. A grin split her face for the first time in weeks and she laughed at the feeling of the wind brushing against her fur and whipping at her face. She let her eyes shut as she reached a plain expanse of land, but eventually she slowed back to a now exhausted walk and scanned the area around her. What she found was something interesting. Hills, many of them, and they looked like oh-so-much fun to climb. Zivia knew the climb would distract her from bad thoughts that now pushed at the edges of her mind.

With eagerness, she began to trek up and through the hills, almost stumbling and falling over more than once. She lodged her claws into the earth now as she moved and pushed herself forwards with her back legs more than pulling with her front, until she reached the top of the hill. She looked down at the valley below and made the careful trek downwards. Once inside, she heard the sounds of someone else moving about and sniffed at the air. A familiar scent, one of a lions, and she presumed it to be one in her pride. She slowly picked her way over to the young, male lion and grinned at his speech. A small giggle escaped her before she could stop it.

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PostSubject: Re: Finding Beauty Is Easy   Fri Jul 06, 2012 2:59 am

Kifu had been so engrossed his own fantasy that he had never even noticed Zivia coming up behind him. When he heard a giggle flutter through the air though he whirled so quickly he almost tripped over his own paws and had to right himself after he crossed them all. He cleared his throat quickly and his head shot up in suspicion studying the pale form of the lioness, she was an odd thing, light on top while her undercoat was a darker color. He met her sea green eyes with his own pale jade ones, "I-I didn't know anyone was here? Who are you?" he asked the last question slight sharply and leaped down off of his rock to be on level ground with her.

He made sure to face her and watched her with slight suspicion, his behavior was mostly due to embarrassment. He hadn't know that anyone had been lurking, especially not a female somebody, and she had giggled at him in what he could only guess was they way he'd often been laughed at by most. He hadn't met the female yet himself, he wasn't sure how she had escaped his notice but as far as he had known only the golden Baset lived here besides Nako, himself and Heshima. Nako had made it clear this was to be a haven for all and Kifu admired that fact and didn't wish to change it but he felt it was his right to know who was travelling in his future kingdom.

A part of him was slightly paranoid that she was a minion of Scar sent to destroy the peace that he and Heshima had finally found but if he really thought about it he doubted this. The lack of Hyena's was his tip off and he felt himself relax slightly and he felt slight guilt at asking her such a sharp question, so he clearly his throat and decided he'd change tactics slightly. "Do you live here?" he added in a softer tone and waited for her answer before he told her who he was and just what position he held here, sure he was proud to be a Prince again but that didn't mean he wanted to rub her nose in it.

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Zivia

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PostSubject: Re: Finding Beauty Is Easy   Fri Jul 06, 2012 7:27 am

Zivia felt herself embarrassed over the fact that she'd given off such a girly giggle. It didn't cross her mind that he might take it as her laughing at him, but rather just amused at his slightly cub-like actions. Her expression darkened for a moment, for thinking of cubs reminded her of Tao, the sister she'd abandoned. She swallowed around the lump that formed in her throat and her expression smoothed out once more as she stared at Kifu. She had seen him before, Nako had introduced him to her but Kifu had been busy and hadn't noticed either of them. Busy doing what, she wondered? He'd just seemed distracted, and they hadn't wanted to disturb him. She smiled, admiring his faded, jade coloured eyes. Her smile was gentle, but slightly wary. She hoped she hadn't upset him with her presence, and the sharpness of his question made her feel as if she'd done something wrong.

It was obvious to her that he didn't know who she was, with the suspicious look in his eye and the way he spoke to her. She sat back to lessen her height and show she was not a threat, just happened to stumble across his hiding place. She took a moment to examine his coat, a lovely brown colour that wasn't quite the same as any other brown she'd seen. It was light, but also dark at the same time with a tinge of red to it. He was still young, but around her age. That would be nice for a change, to have someone her age to talk with. Though she loved her siblings and her old Pride, she had none that she could really just be friends with. "Oh! I'm terribly sorry, I didn't mean to startle you. I was just wandering," she smiled warmly. "I'm Zivia." She offered.

She nodded her head as he questioned if she lived there, but wasn't one to give out her entire story to a stranger. As if to prove her point, she knew that she should at least explain that Nako had found her. She noted the way his voice was softer this time, as if he was trying to make up for his previously sharp and abrupt question that had startled her and made her feel slightly shameful. "Yes, I do live her. King Nako found me whilst I was looking for water and something to eat and offered me to stay here. You're Kifu, aren't you?" She asked gently. She kept her tone soft and as non-threatening as possible. Spies were not taken lightly within kingdom's, and often gained a lot of mistrust. First impressions were everything, and if she came across as a spy it would take a while to fully gain his trust.

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PostSubject: Re: Finding Beauty Is Easy   Fri Jul 06, 2012 3:01 pm

The female sat down and Kifu felt guilt naw at him when she was anything but hostile, she smiled warmly at him despite his sharp question and even apologized. It appeared that she hadn't been laughing at him and now he was the one who felt slightly ashamed and sheepish. When she introduced himself he felt like he should have slapped himself with a paw, of course he had met this lioness, his eyes had been wandering all over the place when he'd entered the dens and he'd only really registered names and not appearances. He was sure if he had bothered to look he would have remembered her, it was hard to forget someone with such a lovely coat.

He let out his own laugh when she confirmed they'd met by knowing his name and he looked sheepish dragging a paw through the ash, dirtying the digits even more than they already had been. "Yes I remember you now, I'm sorry I was..." he had been a lot of things when they had met, flustered, scared, excited, paranoid but now that he was calmed and more assured that this was finally going to be home he could really focus. "Well I was distracted when we met, I guess I was just overwhelmed at finding a new home for my mother and I" he said sheepishly and looked up at her with a smile on his muzzle now.

The cubs from the rest of the pride hadn't really wanted anything to do with the royal cubs back home so it wasn't often he'd gotten to talk to anyone that wasn't related to him in one way or another. It wasn't an odd feeling talking to someone else though, it was kind of nice, she was nice. Even his siblings had rarely been nice to him, he could only really count Ari and Heshima that had ever really genuinely seemed to like him but that could change. He had to remind himself that he wasn't in the Pridelands, nobody knew who he was here and he was finally free to start over, to make friends like he never got the chance to. The thought cheered him and he overcame his sheepishness and grinned sitting down as well.

"I didn't mean to snap earlier, I guess I was just startled, this place just brings out the cub in me I guess" his ears drooped and he let out a laugh but his smile was still there, "What were you doing out here all alone?" he asked curiously and cocked his head to the side slightly.

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PostSubject: Re: Finding Beauty Is Easy   Thu Jul 26, 2012 7:34 pm

Zivia felt slightly embarrassed now at stumbling across him, and his reaction had startled her. She lowered her head slightly and stared down at her paws. She wanted to tell herself to toughen up and respond snappishly like the old Zivia would've, but she knew she wasn't like the young cub anymore. She was softer, quieter, and had a new outlook on life. She was grateful for everything she had now. Especially after loosing two mother figures. She took in a breath and lifted her head once more, looking apologetic. She should've just stayed back in the tree's rather than approach him.

She felt slightly relieved when he laughed, and it made her feel as if she was forgiven for intruding on his privacy. She looked down at his paw and then back up into his lovely green eyes. She smiled warmly at him as he apologised and shook her head. She understood, if she'd been in the Outlands and had a new lion laugh at her whilst she played, she would've been flustered and slightly hostile too. "Don't worry, that's alright. I'm new here, anyway, so i'm probably a foreign face to you," She smiled again at him, scratching her claws against the earth. It was a habit she'd picked up when she was talking to someone. SHe had trouble sitting still, so scratching the earth lightly was a way to sate her desire to get up and move around. She'd always been a very active cub, loving to tease the crocodile's. Un-like the other cubs, she liked danger. It would be her downfall one day.

"Ah, I miss being a cub," Zivia said wistfully, looking around and smiling fondly as she thought back to being a cub, full of innocence. How she missed being at peace and happy, she hoped she could find those familiar feelings here in the Ashlands, were she'd already found that she felt safe. She was no longer tired and exhausted, though the guilt from leaving Tao and the rest of her family behind still ate away at her every day. In time, it would fade but for the moment Zivia felt she was doomed to be guilt-ridden for the rest of her days. "I hate just sitting around with nothing to do, I used to always have nothing to do where i'm from until the cubs came along, and I like to wander and discover new things. What were you doing out here all alone?" She asked in turn.

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PostSubject: Re: Finding Beauty Is Easy   Thu Aug 02, 2012 6:51 am

He noticed the way she idly scratched her claws against the Earth, not threateningly but just as a way to relieve some energy he guessed. He studied her while she looked around sheepishly, she was...well she was pretty, he hadn't ever really gotten a look at another lioness that was his age since they'd left the Pridelands and he felt stirring in his stomach like he'd swallowed some butterflies and he was confused. That was a new feeling. He pushed it away and fixed his jade eyes on her shimmering blue green ones, he'd never seen eyes that could so easily be taken for either color, they were fascinating on their own right.

He stopped his staring when she spoke again about being a cub and looked around and he laughed roughly, his throat slightly gummed up for some reason. Her answer was logical and he laughed himself, he looked sheepish again and dragged a paw through the ash soiling his feet more than they already had been. "I guess kind of the same, I haven't ever really been able to wander since I was a cub so it's kind of nice to do it now. Oh and of course practicing my speeches, but you already knew that" he looked skyward for a moment in embarrassment before looking back down at her again with a slight smile that displayed the emotion clearly.

"You know...you're bored, and I'm bored...we could walk around together? If you wanted company that is, I mean I'm sure you could find Baset or maybe Nako but I was just heading...around so I figured we could explore. I've been wanting to anyways" it was the sudden nerves getting to him and he probably sounded like an idiot but he gave her a lopsided smile anyways and hoped she'd accept. It would be nice to make a friend, he'd never had any before so it was new for him, especially with her being a girl. Regardless he found himself curious about her and if she accepted maybe they could share where they had come from, for some reason he just trusted her, maybe it was the familiar pale of her coat or maybe she just looked like an angel to him.

It was hard to really tell but he couldn't deny that he didn't mind the idea of walking and talking with her.

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Zivia

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PostSubject: Re: Finding Beauty Is Easy   Mon Aug 27, 2012 8:58 am

Zivia's eyes flickered to him and noticed that his lovely, jade green eyes were focused on her claws which were lightly scratching against the earth. It was a habit that she'd picked up as a cub to relieve any stress, or when she was bored. She often did it now when in any situation that she felt embarrassed. Like she did now. She immediately stopped her claws and looked away, embarrassed yet again. She soon drew her eyes back to him, studying his coat. He was different to the other lions she'd seen, but then they'd mostly all looked the same - except for Kudumu, who looked like his mother Ilani. She liked it, his coat contrasted well with the undercoat, and his eyes almost glowed.

Zivia felt her face slip slightly into a more saddened look as she expressed her wish to be a cub once more. Zivia wished for a lot of things. She wished for the safety of her father, her brothers, her sister, she wished for her real family to still be alive, and she wished for Ilani to not have passed during the birth of her beloved siblings. She refused to let such thoughts bring her down and instead thought about the fun parts of being a cub. "I've wandered so much in the past few weeks it's amazing that I haven't tired of it. But, I still love to explore new places and the Ashlands is completely new to me. I still have the curiosity of a cub. Why were - Oh!" She exclaimed in realisation. She remembered that Kifu was Prince of these lands and smiled softly at him.

Zivia's mind drifted to a conversation she remembered having shortly after Ilani's death with her beloved, wonderful father, Kiume. She could remember him adopted her as his daughter - not only that, but as his royal daughter. She'd been a Princess, though of course she knew that she would never be Queen not unless something terrible happened to her siblings and she was the only one left to take over the throne. Naturally, she'd been fine with that - simply honoured to be welcomed into the royal family. Guilt tugged at her, the same father who had kindly taken her in she had cruelly abandoned. Zivia looked back to him, zoning in once more as he began to ramble slightly and she laughed softly.

"Don't be so flustered, you act like you've never asked someone to walk with you before. Of course i'll walk with you, Kifu, we can get to know each other and maybe become friends." She grinned at him, glowing inside at being asked to take a walk with him. Though she wasn't so sure why exactly it made her feel this light-headed.

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PostSubject: Re: Finding Beauty Is Easy   Thu Aug 30, 2012 2:00 am

Kifu had always been a Prince and he'd given it little thought back in the Pridelands so he'd never felt self conscious about it but now with Zivia he felt himself grow sheepish as she remembered he was a Prince and uttered an oh. He sincerely hoped that didn't change anything, he didn't want to be adored or treated differently just because he was royalty, he wanted to earn how people treated him. He swept his paw through his small but nondescript drawing in the ash to clear it away before smiling at her and shrugging, his smile was slightly sheepish but nothing beyond that as she quickly glanced away towards home and then back to Zivia.

She comforted him, it was that easy to see he was self conscious and he mentally kicked himself for it, she probably thought he was an idiot. A babbling, bumbling idiot. He sighed softly and tired a tight smile, "I...I haven't really asked a lot of people to walk with me before actually, back home I didn't really have many friends" he could have kicked himself again. Way to sound pathetic Kifu. He gritted his teeth and winced, "What I mean is that I'm just not really that great at making friends, but...I'd like it if we could be friends" he smiled softly at her and let his ears droop down a little with a slight nervous laugh.

He started walking without real direction and waited for her to follow so he could keep pace with her. When they'd settled into a comfortable rythm he'd look over to her and study her silently for a moment again, "So, um, what brings you to the Ashlands? That is if you don't mind me asking!" he added the last part slightly panicked but calmed himself and tried to look just mildly curious rather than as nervous as he felt. Why was he so darn nervous?! She was just another lioness, his age...and pretty...and those eyes...and that pelt color and...he shook his head and stared at his feet. He was staring too much now, what was going on?

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PostSubject: Re: Finding Beauty Is Easy   Thu Aug 30, 2012 7:47 am

Zivia could easily remember what it was like to be a Princess. To be treated with respect despite your age, your little experience in life, it didn't matter. Respect and adoration was handed to you on a silver platter. It was for this reason, that Zivia wasn't about to only like Kifu because he was the Prince. She would treat him with respect, of course, as a Prince deserved, but he would be treated with manners like she would treat anyone else. Her liking him had nothing to do with his status as a Prince. She thought he was nice to spend time with, and his flustered way of speaking to her made her smile and she had to try hard not to burst into giggles at him again - as she didn't want to offend him.

Zivia smiled slightly at him as he looked horrified by every single word that spilled out of his mouth. She nudged his shoulder with her paw and laughed softly, a casual grin on her face as she shook her head lightly. "Relax, Kifu, I haven't had many friends before either. Only my siblings-" She stopped before she could continue, her expression going blank for a moment before she shook her head and smiled again. "I'd like if we could be friends too. I haven't met anyone my age before." She confessed, giggling slightly as his droopy ears.

"You look cute when you do that with your ears." She blurted out without thinking, before her eyes widened at her own words and she looked away, embarrassed. Everything he did was adorable, why? Why was she struggling to tear her eyes away from his brilliant jade ones, his lovely pelt? She shook her head, but looked saddened as he asked about her past. She supposed that being in a friendship meant talking to one another, opening up, so she decided to maybe share a little of her past. "I'm from the Outlands," She started softly, looking down. "My family are all deceased, I passed out and the King, Kiume, had brought me into his lands. His mate Ilani adopted me as her daughter, but during the birth of my siblings she..." Zivia looked up at the sky with tear-filled eyes. "What about you?" She responded hoarsely, un-able to continue.

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PostSubject: Re: Finding Beauty Is Easy   Thu Sep 13, 2012 12:11 am

He finally managed to breath and let out an apologetic sigh and smiled when he reassured him that he could calm down. She was right, he was being silly, he needed to calm down and maybe she wouldn't think he was an idiot or so awkward that he was annoying. He was cheered by the fact that she wanted to be friends too and he finally settled into a relaxed pace, but he felt himself grow warm in the region of his chest when she mentioned that he looked cute when he did the drooping with his ears. In that case he'd never move them up ever again. Of course that wasn't true but still, the did move into a perked up position at her clear embarrassment, at least he wasn't alone in that.

She looked sad when he asked where she came from and he regretted asking her, his own expression softening as he watched her explain. It wasn't long but it was enough for him, her family had died and then her adopted mother had died, he could only imagine the pain. He'd felt only a sliver of what she had because of his loss of Ari but he couldn't imagine losing his mother and and let his shoulder brush hers briefly when he saw tears in her eyes. He looked ahead of them, she had been truthful with him so it was his turn to be truthful with her, "Well it's kind of a secret but...I trust you..." how did he even begin to explain Scar to her? He took a deep breath, focusing on counting his steps to keep himself calm, "I'm really from the Pridelands, like Baset, except...well my father is Scar, but he was so horrible to my mother and my siblings that my mother and I ran away after...after my sister died and he exiled my other sister. There weren't many of us left and I guess he decided he wanted to be rid of all of us and exiled my mother, I'm not like him..." he said the last part desperately and looked over at her.

She was an Outlander, would she hate him? His expression was pleading in a sense, he wasn't like Scar, could she see that? Or would she simply hear of his lineage and think that he was evil because of it, like so many condemned him back in the pridelands would she as well? He hoped not, he had come so far to escape that but perhaps his unwillingness to lie to his first friend would seal his fate as an outcast here as well. Heshima would be furious with him if this got around no doubt and he felt guilt, he already wished he could take it back.

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PostSubject: Re: Finding Beauty Is Easy   Tue Sep 18, 2012 10:22 pm

Scar. The word echoed in her head, running around and around in circles long after he'd uttered the word. Her body tensed as she remembered the tales that had circles the Outlands, that the leader of the Pridelands, Scar, was the reason they were all stuck there. Because they had all remained faithful to the last King, Mufasa, a King of kindness and love that all had adored. The tales of him, the way they all spoke of King Mufasa was with fondness. And Scar was his brother, but no two brothers had ever been so different in their ways. They said that he was evil, that all feared Scar because he had not a drop of kindness in his blood. Zivia thought of her homelands, of her father, and she could feel her body tensing as she stared at Kifu blankly, un-sure of how to respond to him. She was not one to judge, but Scar had been a terrible word to utter in their land. Could she really trust Kifu when his lineage said otherwise?

She looked down at her paws and scratched them against the Earth, her nerves back as her mind raced. She could hear her heart beating loudly in her ears and was worried that he might be able to hear it. She didn't want to leave him hanging like this when he quickly assured her that he was nothing like his father. Was he lying to her? She looked back up at the lion and stared into his faded green eyes. They were full of earnest and truth, and he seemed to be hanging off her answer, to see how she would react to the news. She felt guilt wash over her - she was starting to become sick to death of the feeling - as she realised she was being un-fair. She trusted Kifu whole-heartedly because he wasn't lying, just one look into his eyes could tell her that and so she nodded her head in acceptance. She considered his words deeply, wondering how to respond. She felt a pang in her chest, he knew loss just like her. She stepped forwards and gently bumped her head against his in a manner that was supposed to offer comfort to him.

"Your father doesn't sound very nice, Kifu, i'm sorry that you had to grow up the way you did. I am also sorry for your loss, and i'm glad that you aren't like him. He doesn't sound like the kind of lion that would make a very good friend, after all," she smiled softly at him. "I'll keep your secret, don't worry," she forced herself not to think about just what exactly his secret was. She trusted Kifu, and she refused to judge him based on his past. He was not his father - at least, she dearly hoped he wasn't because she didn't want to make friends with a jerk. She sighed and looked down at her paws again, then back up at him. "I suggest not sharing that with anyone you wouldn't trust your life with, Kifu. They might not be as... understanding as I am. A lot of lions will condemn you for your lineage." She was being serious, as she seriously was concerned for her friend. She didn't like the thought of him being an outcast for something he couldn't control.

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PostSubject: Re: Finding Beauty Is Easy   Mon Oct 01, 2012 6:46 pm

He could see the change in her posture as soon as he'd uttered his fathers name and he stiffened himself, the desperation in his eyes shining all that brighter while his courage wavered. He had to tell her, he had to tell somebody, so know that there was faith from someone else that he wasn't going to be his father but maybe he shouldn't have told Zivia. Why had he felt the need to tell her the truth so badly? He felt his stomach drop out and he felt queasy as her expression turned blank, no words coming from her as she seemed to dwell on what he'd just said. Her eyes finally fell to her paws and he wanted to cry out in frustration and regret but he simply took deep breath and swerved gently away from her so there was more space between them while they walked. No doubt she'd not want him close to her now.

He kept his eyes on her regardless and when she finally looked up and nodded, he saw the guilt behind her eyes for only a moment. Was that the only reason she trusted him? Guilt? He wasn't sure and he stayed silent but his expression had fallen quite far and he couldn't find it in himself to bring his smile back even for a moment, maybe Giza had been right. They would never escape their father as royalty. He was just about to drop his head when he felt her own bump against his gently and he felt shock and a thrill ripple through him and along his spine, could that mean she didn't blame him? He looked to her, searching her face and eyes for confirmation and when she spoke he knew she spoke the truth because her own face was so sincere. He did lower his head sheepishly when she advised him to keep such a thing to himself unless he really trusted the lion or lioness he was telling it to and he cleared his throat, dragging his feet slightly.

"I know...but I wanted you to know the truth, friends don't lie to each other right?" he mumbled before glancing up at her. Her concern made his heart warm and he brought his head up some, enough that he could smile at her a little more, "I won't tell anyone else, I think mother is the one who should do that if and when the time comes. She and I aren't really proud of our past anyways, we never did anything wrong but Scar...well he's not popular I've noticed" he said with a grimace and shook his head. He didn't like being associated with Scar any more than anyone else liked even talking about him but he couldn't help who his father was, he just hoped that none of his siblings had to deal with what he did and hope as well that no other poor souls became ensnared in the tyrants web.

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PostSubject: Re: Finding Beauty Is Easy   Wed Oct 17, 2012 11:28 pm

Trust. That was what it all came down to with Zivia. She had not trusted herself to be a good sister, a good hunter when she had lived in Outlands, and most of all she had not trusted herself to be the best that she could be. It was why she had fled in the first place, because she had a lack of faith in herself, she had experienced so much pain in her life, losing first her biological family, and then her adoptive mother who she'd come to love so fully in the short time she'd known her. When she'd lost Ilani, her world had come crashing down and for a while, Zivia had believed in herself and had full faith that she would return and be whole again, but it hadn't worked out that way. She didn't trust herself to be a good lioness, so she had left her father so as not to watch him as he stared at her in shame. Because she knew that she would fail him as a daughter.

This was different though, this wasn't about trusting herself - this was about trusting Kifu. She hadn't known him for long, but a little part inside of her knew he was good, knew he was not evil like his father had been. The tales of what Scar had done were most likely absurd, but not to far off from the truth. He had been a horrible, vile leader one of the others in the Pride had told her. She looked at Kifu and shook her head, no, he was not like his father. His face was so earnest, he was so sweet and kind to her. How could someone so easily flustered and embarrassed be a vicious, malicious killer? She noticed the way he swerved away from her a little bit and she stepped back in closer to him, smiling in a reassuring way to let him know that she trusted him, that she wasn't going to abandon him because of the secret he had shared, but rather she felt even better. Because he had trusted her, and his faith in her could instill some faith in herself finally.

She smiled and nodded her head at his statement, wanting to completely assure him that she wasn't going to abandon him and rat him out to everyone for something he couldn't control. "No, friends don't lie to each other. Friends feel comfortable telling one another anything and everything about themselves. Friends support each other through one another's hardships and the things that they have struggled with in life. Friends..." She trailed off and stared down at her paws. "Friends trust each other." She finished but in a quiet, soft tone rather than her reassuring one. She nodded her head absently at him. "Yes, good." Was all she could say as she gave him another small smile. She reached out and placed her paw over his to offer comfort again. "Our past doesn't define us, no matter what happened. Everybody changes and grows." No, her past didn't define her. She was not a quitter, nor was she a runner, she had just chosen to do so to protect those she loved.

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PostSubject: Re: Finding Beauty Is Easy   Tue Oct 30, 2012 6:35 pm

Just as he had opened the distance she closed it between them again and her warmth reassured him. If she hated him then surely she wouldn't come close again and she was smiling once more, making his heart speed up in his chest as his ears laid back and a smile of his own came to his face, a softened look to his jade eyes. Her words were full of experience and he felt some sadness in her, he longed to be able to comfort her like she could comfort him, he wanted to protect her from that sadness. He resolved that he would, if he couldn't comfort her then he would give her something to smile about daily if he had to, he'd make her happy. He didn't know why he felt the fierce need to protect her already, to make her happy, but it wasn't an unpleasant feeling but rather a good one.

Her paw covered his and his stomach gave a leap of excitement that he didn't quite understand before he nodded at her. "You're right, it doesn't define us, and we can make our future better. That's all I want, I want to protect my family and this pride, and you" he didn't factor in how that might sound as focused as he was on telling her what he wanted. "I really did mean what I was saying back there when you found me, I want to prove that I'm not like my father, that even Scar's cubs can be great Kings and Queens, not just for me but my mom and my sisters and my brother" his tone was serious and when he looked over at her there was a hard determination on his face.

Despite his usual quiet and gentle nature, this was something he was fierce about, something he wanted badly. He let his words fade for a moment and looked back in front of them in deep thought, did wanting power make him like his father? No. He wanted to do good with that power, not do evil and make himself a legacy at the expense of everyone but himself like his father had done. He just hoped that everyone else could see it that way. His tone was quiet when he spoke again and he looked at the lioness next to him from the corner of his eyes, "What is it that you want from your future Zivia?" he asked softly and the gentleness was back in his sage eyes.

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PostSubject: Re: Finding Beauty Is Easy   Tue Oct 30, 2012 10:49 pm

Being so close to Kifu was something that felt strangely nice to Zivia. She'd always walked close by Tao and often tackled her younger sister to the ground in playfulness but this was something completely, entirely different to that. Zivia felt warm, accepted despite her cowardly act of running away and safe at Kifu's side, like no matter what happened she'd always have him there. It was so strange because she barely even knew the dark coloured lion with faded jade green eyes but already she knew that their friendship would stand the test of time. They were two lions lost in a world where all they'd known was pain and they were just trying to find a little happiness. It was nice for Zivia to have someone her age to spend time with as well, someone she could actually talk to who understood her completely.

Zivia's eyes came to rest on him and her gaze softened as he spoke, almost taking on a tender look. His words were filled with so much passion it made her heart flutter lightly. It was nice to see the shy lion transform into this passionate, more confident one when it came to an important matter such as protecting his family, his pride - and herself. A shiver of warmth travelled up her spine at his words. "I'm sure that anyone who hears you talk like that won't believe you're Scar's son, Kifu," she smiled lightly at him, feeling warm and fuzzy inside. He wanted to protect her? It was a sweet thought. "How many siblings do you have, if you don't mind me asking?" She was curious about this fact. She assumed he had lots if the tales of Scar were indeed teh truth.

Zivia and Kifu continued to walk at a steady pace, both of their eyes moving ahead of them. Zivia admired the scenery as she walked, though she didn't care for the bits of dust that settled in her pale coat, darkening it by the slightest amount. She consoled herself that she would bathe later to get rid of the dust and make herself feel clean. Other than the dust though, she loved the Ashlands, it was her new home and she felt welcomed here. Zivia slowed in her steps as he asked what she wanted of the future. What did she want? "I want a family," she said in a soft tone. "I want cubs of my own to love and cherish. I want to go and find my father, find my sister and tell them i'm sorry. I want to be happy." The words poured from her lips without her even considering it, and though she'd never really thought about it she realised that was exactly what she wanted. She wanted happiness.

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PostSubject: Re: Finding Beauty Is Easy   Sun Nov 04, 2012 11:38 pm

He smiled at her, warmly and sincerely, she was so kind to him and so accepting of him. Her encouragement bolstered his spirits and he couldn't help but wish their walk would never end, but then again they lived in the same place, he wouldn't ever be far would she? He felt himself heat in embarrassment and was glad for the distraction of her question about how many siblings he had, it was a loaded question...how many he had now was not how many he had started out with, but she was right there were many of them. "I had five at one point. Two brothers, and four sisters...but all that is left now are one of my brothers and three of my sisters" some of them were half siblings but to him they were still siblings even if they weren't from Heshima.

He glanced to her and wondered if she had as many siblings as he himself had had at one time, she had said her entire biological family had passed but she gained a new family. How many of them were missing her right now? He knew it was best not to bring it up, he didn't want to upset her and she had seemed so sad when she'd spoke of them before. She distracted him finally from his wandering thoughts when she answered his question about what she wanted from the future and he felt his mouth go dry and his eyes crease in sadness for her. She wanted to be happy...that was all he wanted, all his mother had wanted and all his siblings had ever wanted. They were so alike and his heart ached for her in that moment so heard he was sure it would burst in his chest or bring him to his knees.

He moved closer to her and suddenly leaned his head into the side of her, nuzzling her gently for a moment in a bold move, before putting a comfortable space between them again but not large enough that he couldn't feel her warmth. "You deserve those things Zivia, and you'll get them...I don't know why you left your family but I know that one day you'll have the courage to go back to them and they'll love you just the same. And I know you'll have cubs, I mean you're pretty and I'm sure that...er well...you know" he trailed off awkwardly and felt himself flush so much that his ears buzzed. He had just called her pretty out loud hadn't he?

What did he want from his future, did he want cubs? It was something he couldn't answer immediately but the more he thought about it yes he did...raising his own children would continue the life of his new home and what lion didn't want to be a father! Would he even be good at it though? That was entirely different line of worries he had.

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PostSubject: Re: Finding Beauty Is Easy   Sun Nov 11, 2012 1:03 am

Zivia felt her heart flutter at the warmth of his gaze on her. How could he illicit such a response in her with a simple gesture as smiling? But it seemed that Zivia was doomed to be affected by Kifu in ways that she'd never experienced before and she had no clue what was going on. The feeling of warmth that coursed through her body wasn't un-pleasant at all, if quite foreign, she rather liked it. It felt strangely nice, after all. She frowned at the knowledge of the loss of many siblings and she sighed, bumping her shoulder lightly against his. She understood the feeling of loss, that not quite as much as she realised. For when Zivia returned to the Outlands, she would discover that her brother Kavu had taken his leave from the Pride as well, not unlike herself.

"I'm sorry that you lost so many siblings, Kifu. Do you know where the others are now?" She asked softly, wondering if maybe she shoudn't've asked in case she was stepping over some invisible line. She already considered Kifu her friend, and she believed that friends should be able to share everything with one another. He didn't ask about her family, but Zivia felt she ought to at least tell him a little about them. "I don't remember much of my family," she was talking of her biological one, of course. "I remember my mother, she looked just like me except she had green eyes. My father had blue eyes and he had a golden coat. I can remember a sister who looked like me too, and a brother who was my littermate. It was always hot, and there were lots of cubs to play with," Zivia frowned as she tried to bring back the memories. She couldn't stop the gasp as it escaped her every time she remembered seeing her mother's body ripped open. "My next family had three cubs, my mother died when she gave birth to them and my father was a kind lion who took me in after her passing."

Zivia could feel the sadness as she pictured Tao in her mind, her favourite sibling - as terrible as it was to have favourite's. She'd loved Tao dearly, her sister meant the world to her and ever since leaving the Outlands her sister had been the one she missed the most. She would go back one day soon, she had been in the Ashlands for a few weeks now and had spent a week or so out in the savannah. "Thank you Kifu, i'm glad that you think I deserve those things," Zivia's cheeks heated as she looked down and ducked her head, smiling wildly as he called her pretty. She looked up at him shyly and tilted her head to the side. "You- you think i'm pretty?" She asked softly. She'd never been called pretty before and to hear it come from Kifu's mouth made her feel all warm and fuzzy.

"Do you want cubs, Kifu? I mean cause you're pretty cute and i'm sure a lioness would be... um, interested," not unlike Kifu, Zivia felt herself become flustered when it came to discussing the attractiveness of the other. Kifu was definitely attractive, and Zivia already had a favourite feature - his eyes.

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PostSubject: Re: Finding Beauty Is Easy   Sun Nov 11, 2012 9:35 pm

She bumped his shoulder with her own and he gave her an appreciative half smile, she was so caring, it was nice. Her question had him nodding, "All except one. My sister Giza lives with the Lowlanders but she's gone looking for my other sister Tasa whom my father exiled. My other two siblings, Nuka and Uma are still with my father" he frowned at his last words, once again regretting that they couldn't save Nuka or Uma but Kifu had a feeling that if they'd taken Nuka Zira would have never stopped searching for them even if Scar wasn't impressed with the scrawny male that his queen had given him.

He quieted when Zivia was telling her own story of her family and he listened to her intently, he seemed saddened that she couldn't remember much of her family. He wondered why that was, was it amnesia or was something horrible blocking those memories from her mind? He dropped his head slightly when she came to the part about her next family, she had known so much loss, so much more than his own and he leaned into her a little to offer her his comfort and warmth while they walked. "I'm sorry you lost so many yourself, it's never easy, losing family" he said softly and looked up at her with comfort in his soft sage eyes. He felt for her, the pain that he had felt each time he had lost a sibling probably couldn't compare to losing two mothers, a father, and siblings all in a short amount of time. She was strong in his eyes since after it all she was still standing and finding things to smile and laugh about.

His blurting of her being pretty made her duck her head and he looked just as uncomfortable as he felt, what an idiot he was. When she asked him the question however and tilted her head like she did he couldn't look away and his mouth dried out, "W-Well I...yeah..." he croaked and looked away again to hide the embarrassment, his ears pinning against his head again in their droopy fashion, they really were too big for his head sometimes. Her reciprocation made his stomach flutter with a million butterflies and he looked up swallowing, "I...well I think so. Cubs of my own...I would like them someday, whenever I find someone special" he said special softly and thought maybe his gaze lingered a second longer than normal on her eyes before he looked away towards the ground in front of them.

"I'm not that cute" he refuted with a stutter and then a laugh to try and alleviate some of the embarrassment for both of them. He saw her own flush and wondered if maybe he wasn't the only one feeling those butterflies, this was so...odd, maybe he should talk to Heshima about it or Nako, surely they would know what was going on with him. "You know what? I'm really glad you found this place Zivia..." he added softly when the silence stretched just a little, he didn't know he had said it, only that he had wanted to.

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PostSubject: Re: Finding Beauty Is Easy   Mon Dec 03, 2012 10:36 pm

Zivia's ears lifted as she heard a cricket in the distance and she ignored a playful urge to go search for it as she used to do whenever there was life in the Outlands. One of her more adventurous experiences in the Outlands had been frolicking with the crocodiles and she couldn't count the amount of timess she'd almost been snapped up. As always at the memories, she rolled her shoulder forwards and peered at the bite mark on her leg were one of them had managed to gnash it's teeth over her skin but she'd yanked away before permanent damage other than a scar could be seen. The fur was strange in the way it grew around the scar, revealing it but also covering most of it. She was glad for most of it being covered and the skin where the scar was being pale, for if her father had seen the scar he would've been most displeased.

Zivia looked ahead steadily as they walked, her ears lowering once more as playful thoughts left her mind and they flopped on her head in a movement that she'd already picked up from Kifu. His sister had been exiled by his own father, that was a terrible fate to befall the lioness. She noticed the frown when he mentioned Uma and Nuka. Once more, she wondered what he was thinking but did not pry to much, instead letting out a soft sigh. "Well I hope Giza finds your sister then. I'm sure Uma and Nuka are fine." She worried that perhaps he was concerned for the welfare of his siblings and she offered him a genuine smile. If they were in the Pridelands they were far form fine, she could still remember how barren they looked. They had changed so quickly, from lush to dead. She shook her head in dismay, how could one lion ruin all of that? An image of hyena's appeared in her mind and she knew just how.

Zivia's expression softened from the hard, upset look it had been featuring and she smiled at him. "I've almost become accustomed to it. I feel as if i'm going to lose those I become close to in life, but thank you for being so considerate," her smile faltered a little at her own words and she knew it was a very pessimistic view on life but who was to blame the pale lioness? For all she had ever known was the sting of loss and the agony of being torn apart from family that you loved so much. She could remember the burning love for her mother and father as a cub and the happiness around her siblings, and she of course remembered the sweetness and tenderness of Ilani as she took her in as her own daughter. She felt that same sickening worry that something had happened to Tao, Kiume, Kavu and Kudumu but when she went ot sleep she dreamt of them all living peacefully and it eased her worries. Perhaps it was easier for them without her, for she took up more food and water that they all could use to have more for one another. It was better that she left, she was becoming sour and she would never have wanted them to see the sadness that Tao so obviously had.

Zivia's smile returned once more at the way Kifu seemed so flustered by the question. Was he embarrassed that he was being asked by a girl? A very gentle laugh escaped her and she bumped her shoulder against his once more to offer comfort. "You stutter a lot," she commented with a playful grin. She noticed that his gaze lingered when he said 'someone special' and she wondered if he knew anyone special. She dropped her blue-green gaze to the ground and her brow furrowed in contemplation. But she knew he hadn't met any girls other than her - unless you could count his siblings - so she assumed not. She had always wanted her own cubs to love and cherish but there was still that fear of losing everything she loved. She felt a constricting of her chest as she thought about losing Tao. Tao was like a daughter to her, and she could imagine the pain if Tao was her daughter. "Me too. I won't just have cubs with anyone. And you are very cute, mister. You have nice eyes, too." She grinned. She looked contemplative before smiling. "Me too."

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