If you’ve been watching, you’ll know that a week ago yesterday (which was Dec 3, 2016), I joined the cast of the World of Darkness Game Night with Geeks.
My character, Taiga Borealis, created “gifts” for each of the members of the Pack, as well as one she gifted to Aisha.
Below are each of the ones that she gave, along with the tiny (<< lol) written part to each being, and what their gift symbolises. Each of these took me several hours of (real) time to complete, and two in particular I had a fun task of trying to find the right collection of items to properly do what my brain was demanding of the gift.
Dear Dante, your gift is the Celtic Multi-Tool – since you are a Bastet from Ireland, I went to a library and researched all about your homeland. It is so pretty! The Celtic knot is made from yew wood; a European cousin visiting a Kinfolk reservation in Canada was able to bring to me. The piece of yew that they brought was from a branch that had snapped off during a lightning storm, so the tree did not suffer in any way from a mortal’s touch. I carved the knots out with my claws, and polished each opening with a first rough paw pad, then buffed each section until it shone with my coarse ursine fur. The Celtic Cat symbol was hand carved out of a rare Canadian green quartz called prasiolite and has been inlayed with danburite crystals from near my birth home. I figured you’d enjoy the multi-tool with a honeysuckle chewy, and Aisha helped me with adding a few other items as well. The a nail file and laser pointer were purchased with your comfort and entertainment in mind, as I have heard you enjoy these items to great levels of pleasure. The feather was cleaned and sanitised but came from a bird shedding it naturally. I was going to get a raven feather, but since you have a Wereraven in your Pack, I felt it was necessary to keep some dignity and not treat him as a castoff.
Dante, I understand completely how you feel compelled much of the time to want to avoid social interaction. I too need my solitary time, and I do not bode well with restrictions or demands that challenge my internal dialogue and moral code. As a wanderer, I feel compelled to do what is right over what is expected; those who have a pack mentality do not understand your need to roam.
I doubt I would be able to be as articulate face to face, but I know what it is like not to want to stick around. I hope my gift will show and encourage you to understand that though everyone comes from different backgrounds, they have much to learn from you, and that you find comfort in learning trust. You are also incredibly interwoven with your Pack family, and that is not something to be taken lightly. The Celtic Knot is to symbolise the power you bring and the bond you share with your new family. I realise they don’t understand the draw of the sacred time you enjoy away from others, and what this pack mentality does to your soul. Be free, but know you are loved and protected all the same.
Dear Jake (from State Farm, though I do not understand the reference, Aisha keeps telling me that you sell something called insurance to people who have trees that fall on their cars. Why don’t these people just move their fucking cars to begin with and they won’t have to worry about the trees falling all the time?)
So, the miniature backpack is to fit you full transformation, but is designed specifically for when you are in your Corvid form.
I have specifically crafted this with the guidance of a lunar spirit, as they know the ways to draw upon bending physical space. I do not understand any of the physics of it, but the lunar spirit understood my request, and it does work. I apologise for it smelling of a Blue Jay, but he was close when I had finished sewing the back straps to the smooth buffed leather and needed to test it for size and weight bearing.
The leather was taken from a deer that had died of natural causes. The body was utilised to capacity, and I paw-dyed the leather from acorns (which are very symbolic and hold great meaning to me personally), lemon juice, and rust I found on old abandoned trapper homes. Aisha has told me that you delight in ‘shiny’ things, and as such, I tried to polish the bag of holding (she said to call it that because she knows you’d find it funny) to be as gleaming as possible. If you use a bit of the bee’s wax I have left in a tiny phial inside one of the inside pouches, you’ll be able to keep it as shiny as you like.
This backpack is for all your special tools you need. Since you are primarily a thief/tech guy in your homid form, the backpack is small enough to fit into a pocket of a coat if it needs to be but it will fold out when you open up fully. All of your lockpicking tools should fit and any other tools can be safely tucked away without losing them.
I do not understand why you need to steal, and I don’t agree with your actions, but I do appreciate that you are living your truth, so because of that, I will try to accept and attempt to understand the impulses that you have to steal and use all that human technology. I am glad that you have found a positive group of individuals who are showing you that you are not alone, and your choices don’t make you a bad birdie.
Perhaps someday soon, you and I can have a discussion on what it means to you to steal and why you do so, as I am curious to learn, without judgement or scorn.
Dear Lydia, I know our breeds don’t usually play well together. I don’t believe that it is necessary to blame you however for the sins and wrongdoings from your ancestors towards my ancestors. I realise that the time to put bygones aside has come to pass.
Your friendship with Aisha is something that is strong, beautiful, and something I deeply respect. Loyalty and friendship are vitally important to me, and to see someone I care for a great deal have admiration and so many wonderful positive memories with you makes me want to show you the proper respect as well; that and for being the Alpha leader of your unique familial Pack.
Aisha found this beautiful unicorn in a bisque form at a ceramic shop on the reservation I’m currently staying with Griz-cousins, and I hand painted it with natural dyes I turned into paints. The gold tone is from crushed old discarded and outgrown shells found from the shores of Lake Ontario, wilted dandelions, and other naturally aged or over-ripened plants and deceased insects. The Child of Gaia mark was emblazoned with my own blood, to prove the level of sincerity and commitment of solidarity in the face of ongoing pending danger. We must keep our beloveds safe, and appreciate the fact that you are desperately trying to heal the scars inflicted on the world. You are an ally, a friend to my surrogate daughter, and a Pack Alpha. Those three things, like the tri-symbol of my breed, show that Gaia gives us opportunities to heal and learn from others. I fired the ornament in the flames of the Council of Autumn, and shared it with those of my Kinfolk and cousins, to remind them that sleeping through the long night will not bring the protection we seek. We must move forward with our eyes open. That is why the Polar Gurahl never have the solstice slumber. We do not forget. We will not be left behind. And we will not harm those who align themselves with justice and truth.
Dear Sam, I know you have been the first to run headlong into the fray. I also know, you refuse to give up without a fight, yelling your internationally known (yes, you’re a very well known entity in many realms, you silly lil lizard!) call to battle of “MONTANA!”.
While I was on my way to visit Griz-cousins in the west this summer, one happened to show me a perfect specimen of a piece of amber from over 50,000 years ago, holding a tiny little lizard. I traded services for over a month in order to procure that tiny piece of fragile ancient hardened oak sap, and it was worth it to see the laughter and delight cross Aisha’s face when I showed her my intention with it, and finally when it was completed. I hope that this lizard, forever encased in this golden amber in the shape of the state of Montana helps you realise you need to find down time to reflect and meditate and be good to yourself in order to protect those in your Familial Pack. As Beta, your role is to follow the Alpha, but not blindly. You have the hardest task of the whole family: set the example on how to be prudent and logical. Perhaps this permanently relaxed lizard can give you that peace.
But above all else, please, I beg of only one thing. Be good to my little girl. I promise, when the time is right, you and I will rent the flesh from Eva’s bones and scatter them to the furthest reaches of the earth, bury her heart deep within a volcano’s mountain, and encase her rotten soul forever in a glacier. I know this is seen as mere words right now, but I hope you soon realise that you know understand the magnitude of her trust and admiration in you. Giving you contact information about me, and our special word to advise me of… the situation means that I give you the respect that I have not held for many in not just Aisha’s life, but mine as well.
You have captured the love of a powerful mage, and yet you barely believe that she returns your favour. I hope you now understand, with these words, her love for you is so paramount, only ONE other living entity ever had that secret word that Aisha and I had decided on many, many years ago. I felt the loss of his soul when… no, another time perhaps we will speak of Kon. Until then, know you are always going to be valued and respected, so long as you continue to love Aisha the way she deserves. Thank you, for loving her. For giving her a reason to come back to this realm. Never dismiss her anger, but never internalise it unless you deserve it for a slight committed on her. She is a proud and intensely strong being, but also fragile and vulnerable.
Dear Dean, I fear I may want to protect you more than any of the others. Aisha has spoken of your altruistic side, though you rarely want others to see it that way. Perhaps you see it as a weakness that you’ll give your life for your Familial Pack members, and your selflessness over shines your own personal needs.
I have learned that you are plagued with vicious and horrendous nightmares, and as such, my gift to you is a very special dreamcatcher. I suffer the burdens of the night as well, for every night in my dreams, I see my two fallen triplet siblings, Pin and Lichen, dying before my 12 year old eyes again and again in the fire that consumed them. My hope is that your dreams are not so violent or damaging to your soul. My optimism maybe too idealistic however. I am sorry you have to endure them.
The various rings, as you will see, are created from a collection of painted bones and hide from a deer that I and several Griz-cousins shared in our ursine form during last year’s Council of Autumn. I have cleaned, sanitized, dried, and painted the deerskin, as I know deer is something we both enjoy in our breed-natural forms.
Aisha helped me with the inner design concept, as I was unaware you and your brother carried tattoos on your pectoral regions in your homid form, and I find it fitting that one circle represents the sun, as I know and respect that you do not live by the tides of the moon’s pull, but of Gaia’s time in the sunlight. The barbed wire is to prove to you that you are strong, but only with the outer ring; the lizard chain reflects your familial bond. Both current, and past. Gwon and Sam aren’t only your family however, as you do have your Pack. I know you are more powerful with Sam at your side. Aisha speaks highly of you, and respects you greatly, hoping that someday, she can witness the mighty T-Rex form you so rightly deserve. I would enjoy that moment as well.
My Dearest Aisha, you know where my heart, allegiance, and protective love will always be. I am but ONE WORD from you at any time. I would move mountains for your smile to be true, and your happiness to be sustained. This is the claw I lost in the battle I first met you in, all those many years ago. I have watched you flourish and grow and mature into the most incredible Spirit Mage I could ever possibly imagine. You have lost much, time and again, and I refuse to have one more moment pass without you knowing I would rip apart the universe if someone hurt you again.
This claw, as you know, was ripped from my body and was held as an evil totem of destruction for many years. I have reclaimed my body’s missing piece, cleansed it in the light of Great She-Bear and Gaia themselves, and asked a blessing from the First Cub and the Death Bear, so that you are protected in this world and the Umbral Plane once you hold this.
So long as this key is around your neck, touching your skin, no fatal harm can come to you, for as long as I breathe. You will not break your lifeforce, and I have begged the Death Bear himself to imbue a sacred Umbral added token of love and protection for your journeys through his Plane.
May you know the joy you have given to me. This key was the one that Pin and Lichen would have needed to… I traveled back to that land, just to find this key. I broke it in two with my bare hands, and have encased it inside my claw for you. You will always have a home as long as I draw breath. Show this key to any Gurahl or our Kinfolk, and they will know. You are loved more than the stars above. Always. Forever.
Due to the nature of these gifts, and the fact that the cast reacted so well (behind the scenes), the Storyteller has allowed Aisha (yes, she granted herself that power!) to make these thoughtful gifts into actual WoD Fetishes.
I’ll have to get the okay on whether or not those special add-on details can be shared with everyone (it will likely be alright, but it will probably be after the next Episode airs).
Don’t forget to tune in Saturday nights for Game Night with Geeks on Twitch and YouTube!