A Little Bit Like Braveheart


koshka_icon.gif sable_icon.gif tasha_icon.gif

Scene Title A Little Bit Like Braveheart
Synopsis Sable and Koshka's plan for a friendly snowball war on Tasha comes to fruition.
Date January 5, 2011

The Garden

Oh, Sable has been waiting for this day. Waiting and planning and plotting and preparing. Please, do not think it is aggression or resentment that motivates her dedication to this project. Dedication to a project alone, for its own sake, would be sufficient to explain the length, depth and breadth of Sable's investment. But if it needs to be personal, and most such projects of hers are personal, then think of it as a labor of love.

It may be hard, but try.

There are multiple snowball magazines set up throughout the woods, hidden inside hollow logs or nestled between the roots of trees, the sort of thing that might raise an eyebrow if found, but not likely thought much of. The upswing in temperature may have done some damage to these caches, but enough snow remains in piles and drifts, and Sable has made sure Koshka's snowball making is up to scratch. This is the real deal. Not some two penny operation.

Know how you can tell? Warpaint.

Sable insisted on it, her brow furrowed in concentration as she applied lines of black ash to her cheeks and forehead, creating sharp lines, getting real savage looking, like a wild woodland warrior. Or at least, her idea of one. Koshka is left to do her own daubing, a warrior's markings being a very personal thing, but the marks are an absolute requirement.

So now, yellow eyes peer out from between jagged lines of ash as Sable peeks out from behind a tree, tailing the unsuspecting pray. She scans the other side of the path, looking for her fellow warrior. An ambush must come from both sides. Otherwise it's hardly an ambush at all.

Tasha had missed any sorts of exchanges of glances when she announced going into woods to collect firewood for the stove. It's one of the jobs that needs to be done, and it's one of the jobs she can do easily enough — her small frame is just as capable of hauling wood as anyone else's, after all. It might take a few trips to get any sort of stockpile, but the day is nice enough and a bit of fresh air is good for her.

It's on the first of the trips that she's returning, a large bundle of wood piled in her arms, the gloves and long sleeves of her coat helping to protect her from scrapes and splinters. Her feet crunch through the snow as she comes down this path toward the cottage, not knowing that two warriors lie in wait.

By this time, Koshka should be an expert at making snowballs. Every spare minute she had was spent at the task, along with hiking and hiding the arsenal. And there are a lot of spare minutes at the Garden. Maybe slightly skeptical at first, once plans started being laid the teenager was well caught up in Sable's antics, even anticipating the day to come when the forces would be unleashed.

Tucked away, barely visible amongst the leaf-bare shrub she's taken for cover, Koshka sits in anticipation of what's to come. Only the sound of approach lets her know that their intended target may be coming. Please let it be their intended targe, anyone else might turn scary. A slight shift, along with a turning of blue eyes toward Tasha's approach and then beyond, to Sable's equally hidden form, the teenager waits for some signal. Or the right time.

The signal was prepared in advance. It's just a matter of timing. Sable has one last thing to do before open struggle breaks out. She thumbs open the pocket of her winter jacket, and tugs her earbuds free, slipping onto into the hollow of her ear. A quick dial and a push against her mp3 player, and the next thing she knows, she's hearing the building throb of guitar chords. Grinning wide and wicked, she counts down to her signal.

It's at the same time as Robert Plant's recorded voice that Sable gives out a pair of long wails. "Aaaaaaaaa-ah! Aaaaaaaaa-ah!" Clear as anything, totally suspicious, and with the potential to scare the bejeezus out of anyone not expecting to hear the opening cries of 'Immigrant Song'.

We come from the land of the ice and snow, from the midnight sun where the hot springs blow…

Sable pops out from behind the tree, stooping to gather snow, packing it quickly and then hurling it Tasha-ward, aiming for the girl's arms and shoulders. Playing it clean like it was agreed. Good, clean, merciless fun.

At the first aaaa-ah! the firewood is thrown down and Tasha is spinning to see where it's coming from, eyes widening as a ball of snow comes hurling at her. Surprise goes to the opponents' favor — she tries to duck, turning away, but can't evade the snow-bomb completely. Instead, it wings a shoulder, exploding into a confetti-burst of powder.

She squeals, dropping to her knees to try to pile up her own ammunition; a wide grin on her face shows she's not at all angry as she hurls it at the one rival she thinks she has. "Treachery!" she cries out. She has a decent pitching arm, having played softball from the age of five to twelve.

And so it's begun!

Just a beat or three behind Sable, Koshka straightens from her own place of hiding. With a slight slip and a small hangup on the bush, she misses the initial assault.

Looks to have been good timing, though. Her slower reaction time still lending some partial obscurity to Tasha's point of presence. A snowball in each hand, the teenager flings first one and then the other to strike around the woman's middle.

Oh! That didn't take much! Tasha's fighting back already. That's the real victory, what Sable actually wanted to see, and she's grinning more or less like an idiot as she dives to get out of the way of Tasha's throw, landing in the snow and getting much more snowy than if she'd just taken the hit. But it's not getting snowy that concerns her. It's just getting hit. Rolling over onto her back, Sable scoops up the snow around her and packs tightly. As soon as she hears Koshka's missiles hit home, she flips over and pops into view again, aiming for the legs this time.

"Y'all got no chance, Tash!" Sable declares, utterly gleeful and looking nothing short of bonkers with her weird eyes, savage markings and lunatic's grin. "Give up 'n' mebbe we'll ransom y'!"

"Two against one — how is this fair!" Tasha protests, grabbing another handful of snow and throwing it in Koshka's direction a little wildly, then grabbing for another to throw at Sable when she sees the yellow-eyed woman pop up.

"Geezus, who the hell are you, Braveheart? You're a little short."

Because banter is totally part of snow-warfare.

Koshka lets out a yelp. A squeak really, high pitched and surprised. But it accompanies a duck and turn maneuver that lands the snow exploding against her back. "It's perfectly fair," she calls back. "It's war!"

Slogging through the snow, and creating a snowball along the way, Koshka tries to stay on Tasha's flank. Tactics, you know? Oh, and that snowball is thrown once it's formed, again going for that midsection target area.

"No fair, only foul!" Sable cackles, eyes cutting over to check on Koshka's wellbeing and, in so doing, opening herself up for a clear shot. The snowball bursts apart against her jacket, and Sable yelps as a few cold specks richocet up under her chin, making her take cover again. "Shit, she ain't got no weakass arm. Watch yerself Kosh, we jus' kicked us a hornet's nest!

"Cover me!" Sable calls out, then gets up to make a sprint for one of the caches behind a big old elm. Gripping the rough bark in one hand and swinging herself around behind it before she can risk being pelted by Tasha's mean speedsnowball, she nearly trips and falls right onto her own supply of ammo. Close call! She hurls words while she gathers actual projectiles. "See who's short when yer buried neck deep in freezin' white, girly!"

Cover her. Tasha throws one more ball in Sable's direction but it misses the girl and hits the tree, so she focuses on the youngest among them, darting for her own tree to hide behind and bending down for a handful of powder to pack into another snowball to hurl in Koshka's direction.

She has no cache to pull from, so after throwing that one, she tries to make a few as quick as she can — it's like fighting with a six-shooter against two SWAT members with automatic rifles.

Hornet's nest is one way to call it. Koshka drops onto her knees to make herself a smaller target, shoulder tucked to take the brunt of Tasha's snowball efforts. The next round that shatters against her catches at the top of her shoulder, showering the back of her neck with chilly cold sparkles.

"Ah! That's cold," the youth laughs, hands trying to pack together another couple shots. With a quick glance toward Sable's location, Koshka turns toward Tasha again. In the motion she wings wide and with it a snowball sails haphazardly toward the woman.

Sable has supplies now. Popping out from the side of the tree she uses as cover, she tosses balls in frantic curves, accuracy suffering for simple enthusiasm and a wish not to get smacked herself. Who know Tasha had such a decent chucking arm? That's what Sable gets for underestimating her opponent. Balls burst apart around Tasha in a growing hail, until Sable finds the bottom set of snowballs half melted and refrozen into ice. That's a no-go, iceballs are strictly verboten. Growling frustration theatrically, inches from muttering 'curses!', she barks over at Koshka. "Keep at 'er. Don' let 'er get inside! We can't 'ttack home base!"

"Don't blame me if you're cold!" Tasha laughs back at Koshka, ducking that haphazard pitch which hits the tree and ends up throwing snow in her face anyway, causing her to sputter a bit with giggles, only to get hailed on by Sable's volley.

The few snowballs she's made get thrown quickly, one, two, three at Sable as quickly as she can when the other woman shows herself, and Tasha then makes a break for it, darting out from behind her tree to tear toward the cottage.

"She's trying to escape!" Koshka lurches after Tasha with another snowball in hand. Can't let her get inside. Especially since she doesn't want to be the one to clean up the mess that would ensue. Feet sliding as she half stumbles after Tasha, the teenager tries in vain to close off the way to the door and the safety it holds.

Wildly, Koshka launches her final attack, the lone snowball slung at Tasha's back. "Quick, Sable-" Momentum carries the youth tumbling and sliding frontways along the ground, laughing. "-She's getting away!"

Sable's driven to ground by Tasha's retaliation, forced to lie low and giving the crafty young woman the chance she needs to make that break for it. Cursing, earbud popping free to sputter the yowls of Led Zeppelin impotently into the chill winter air, Sable scrambles to her feet, clawing up some more snow as she pelts after the other two young women, woefully late to the game. She skids to a halt and lines up a shot for the square middle of Tasha's back. In a last desperate attempt, she lets the snowball fly. "Viiiiiictory!" she howls, yeah, a little bit like Braveheart.

Oh, hell. Tasha was a bit of a drama queen — in the thespian sense of the word — in high school, so she might as well give them what they want.

When that snowball pelts the back of her coat, Tasha clutches at it before staggering around for a dramatic moment.

Oh, I die, Horatio! The potent poison quite o'er crows my spirit; I cannot live to hear the news from England — But I do something something election lights," she cries out, snickering at her failed memory. "Fortinbras— he has my dying voice! Something something something. The rest…" and with this, she claws at the sky, "is silence."

And then, she falls straight onto her back, eyes wide and staring at the clouds above.

Koshka watches the performance with what can best be described as the physical varient of 'Huh?!' Sadly, the child has not read Hamlet and is rather lost to the soliloquy. She covers that lack of knowledge by half crawling, half dragging herself across the frozen ground in haste to reach Tasha's side.

Once there, the youth jabs a finger at the woman's side. Y'know, to see if she's still alive or not. "I think we did it," she calls over to Sable. Koshka leans in real close, her face hovering over Tasha's, nearly nose to nose. "She's not moving!"


Growing up in Georgia, there was precious little snow to pelt geeks with, even back when Sable was bitter and mean enough to consider dork pummeling a pasttime. Some ancient, primeval checklist has a fresh checkmark next to an item. Swaggering up like a foolhardy conquerer, she leans over Tasha, spikey dark head blocking out the sun like a shaggy lunar eclipse.

"Welp…" Sable says, tilting her head to catch Tasha's eyes. Play dead, will she? "Le's feed 'er t' th' dogs. Kosh, go get Misty. She'll gobble this sorry soul right up."

Stealthily, sneakily, fingers curl around two handfuls of snow. When first Koshka and then Sable lean over her, both hands come up and each of her rivals get a face-full of the white stuff.

Tasha grins, tipping her head to blink up at Sable. "Who's sorry, now, be-otch?"

Aghplbth. Koshka rocks back after having snow smooshed on her face, the crystals melting and dripping from her nose and chin. "Oh that's not fair," she declares. "You're gonna get it now."

There's still some snow lying around, on the ground, untouched yet in their antics. And Koshka openly grabs up a handful to drop on Tasha's face as she climbs to her feet. Without waiting to see the outcome, the youth scampers around the two women and toward the door to release the hounds. Already she's calling for Misty and Jupiter to rouse them, get them good and excited before she opens the door.

Oh, that's just dirty pool! After setting the rules of engagement up to Tasha's benefit, Tasha herself violates them. The irony burns worst than the ice crystals that sting her face. Just handfuls, not that bad, but still.

Sable shakes her head like a dog, a kind of creature she has been spending a lot of time with. They may be rubbing off on her. "Gorgeous, you don't wanna stark a war 'f one upsmanship with me," Sable says, squinting out one eye as the other squeezes shut, some snow slowly melting in her eyelashes, running down her face and causing her warpaint to run, "'cause I will take you downtown," she flashes a grin and offers Tasha a hand up.

"You ain't half fuckin' bad," she says, and it's delivered as a serious compliment, fighter to fighter, in that manly way where you can never be too impressed, "still, it's too late now. We gotta unleash the hounds." She shrugs, grinning. C'est la mort. Prepare for death by sloppy dog kisses and undying affection.

Tasha giggles. "Fair is foul and foul is fair," she tosses to Koshka, then grabs Sable's hand and pulling herself up. As the dogs come bonding out, she bends to greet them, reparations given in the form of ear scritches and tummy rubs.

Once she's paid back her debts to humanity, or perhaps caninity, she rises again. "Okay. Come feed your prisoner of war some hot cocoa. I'm freakin' freezing now." Snow down the back, much of it her own doing thanks to her dramatic death scene, makes for a chilly captive.

Bouncing and bounding amass in the form of two dogs. Koshka barely has time to get out of the way when the younger comes barreling out the door chased by a whoop and a laugh from the girl. More reserved is Jupiter, the senior dog earning a friendly thump to his side in passing. The teenager, once the dogs have exited and proceeded to the trouncy licking chaos, heads inside to remove wet things and start warming up again.

Chances are good that Koshka'll have cocoa started by the time Sable and Tasha find their way indoors.

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