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TWD Phase 3: Third time's the charm... or not

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AAAAND the last phase La la la la 

This one is a collab with SofiesDrawings I am a dummy! She did the layout sketch, the sketches and flats for her characters and the shading! And I sketched and flatted my characters, lined and did the BG!
My boys are running into Inga again, the awkward is hanging in the air  😂

Last time they met  ---->  Buttheads butting heads by SilvesterVitale (technically there is one more time but that will be a throwback story piece later)


Go love on Sofie's post!  - Something...About You - TWD Phase 3 by SofiesDrawings :happybounce: 


RP Story:

It was raining nails. Cold, sharp raindrops fell from the sky and when they hit the face they felt like little daggers penetrating the skin. It sucked.


Aaron and Eli had decided to try and take cover behind some timber sheds they saw in the distance in an attempt to hide from the wind which directed the cold rain in an awfully painful way. The mood? Gloomy. Eli was about done with everything, staring into empty space as if he was just waiting for it all to be over, Jesus, take the wheel style. Or perhaps auto-pilot was a more fitting way of describing it. Now, Aaron wasn’t happy about the weather either, but at least he hadn’t switched himself off entirely, and while Eli was in his own world Aaron was the one leading the way. 


They reached the sheds they had been scoping out, getting in between them for shelter, but it was soon clear that they were not alone in thinking the same thought. Aaron nodded and tried a smile towards the other entrant. The emphasis was on ‘try’, because he recognized her and their run-in with each other in the past had been… heated. Not between him and her, but with his blonde friend. Eli had yet to notice they had company and Aaron kind of hoped it would remain that way for as long as possible.



Inga had been standing with Agni and Sultana between the sheds for a while, catching a break from the high winds and piercing rain. The force of it all had made her face a bit numb, wet and cold, one of the worst combinations you could get. The weather didn’t quite reach them here, save for the occasional shift sending a sweeping gust of wind through them.


She had kept the canine visible to everyone just in case more entrants would pass the spot soon. The chance seemed likely as she had spotted a few trailing further behind her. But constantly having to tinker with the visibility of Agni left her energy low even though the surrounding nature helped her recharge faster. And the dark circles under her eyes had got worse with the continuous lack of sleep. As much as she had learned about herself through the challenges she had faced during this event, she was about ready to finish it. For now, she had resigned to stare into the white abyss before her as she waited for the weather to ease up.

Her thoughts were interrupted by approaching crunching noises from her right. She already had a feeling who it was even before the source, or sources rather, came into view. And the recognition when they did was immediate. She nodded neutrally if not a bit curiously to the caramel blonde but her expression quickly hardened when she set her eyes on the pale blonde in tow. Of course, they were together. Agni immediately took a few steps closer, feeling the change in Inga’s mood. Meanwhile, Inga automatically glanced towards the abyss again, hoping by some miracle the weather had eased at least a bit. It had indeed not. Of course, it hadn’t. 



No words were exchanged, just a silent nod back. This was going to be one of those awkward silences, wasn’t it? Aaron thought for himself as he began to rearrange some of his packing that he hadn’t had the time for before heading off after the ferry. He glanced towards Eli just as the freckled blonde had detected the other rider, and nemesis.

The scowl was apparent from the moment Eli laid his eyes on Ms Lund whom he had the unfortunate displeasure to meet twice already. The world was clearly working against him to have him run into her a third time. He remained silent unlike Aaron who didn’t seem to be able to take the silence any longer.


“I hope Sultana is serving you well so far?”

Yes, they had leased a horse to Ms Lund for this endurance ride, and the try out, six or so weeks ago had been the second time she and Eli had butted heads with eachother. The first time being last summer at the Lights on the Beach fair grounds.



The silence between them was almost deafening, the only sound being the wind howling past their place of refuge from the weather. And Inga could care less about it. By now, her feelings towards Eli were well known between the three of them and she wasn’t one to sugarcoat anything. If she disliked something or someone, anyone in her near vicinity would likely come to feel it and the pinning glare she sent right back at Eli hopefully signalled as much. It was definitely to her dismay as well that they had come across each other again. Safe to say when Sultana perked up at their approach, Inga didn’t let her step sideways to get closer to her humans. 


Out of the corner of her eye, Agni had come closer in a curious manner when Aaron seemingly rearranged some stuff, catching Inga’s attention away from the glare-off. She raised an eyebrow at the canine. Right, she had still not found any answers to whatever she was feeling towards Aaron and unsurprisingly Agni seemed to feel it too. After all, Inga was a part of her. 


When Aaron broke the silence with his question, she snapped out of her thoughts and exhaled deeply from the pent-up tension and frustration, probably a bit louder than intended too. 

“Oh, yes she is,” She answered with a tense edge to her tone while reaching down to scratch the base of Sultana’s neck. Agni meanwhile sniffed in his direction while hard side-eyeing Eli, though she made no move to acknowledge the other canines in their midst. 



Maja and Caspian, the two borzoi that traveled with Aaron and Eli froze in their tracks when they laid eyes on this other black dog approaching. Maja looked curiously but innocently while Caspian lowered his head in a more threatening stance but didn’t move a muscle, nor did he react to Eli asking his mare to move a few steps away after he was done sending daggers Ms Lund’s way. Maja on the other hand noticed the shift in her handler’s mood and quietly checked in on him.


Once Eli had moved away to further demonstrate how he felt about being in such close proximity to this pleb, he looked away like a proper snob, nose slightly in the air and everything. Aaron did notice Eli moving away, which was probably for the better as he did pick up on the tone of Ms Lund’s voice that she most definitely would prefer his pale blonde friend to, simply put, stay the fuck away.


“That’s good.” Aaron replied, his mind scrambling for something else to say. “Are you enjoying the ride? The whole of the event I mean?”



Agni finally glanced at the curly-haired canines, mostly towards the darker one who seemed on edge. She assessed carefully if this was a threat towards Inga and seemed to deem it worth keeping an eye on even if her main focus was the caramel-blonde human. Inga too took note of it and felt increasingly puzzled by her canine’s interest in the man. It was displayed at Lights on the Beach too after Aaron had become a spectator to Inga and Eli’s confrontation. And now, the new behaviour became more evident by the second especially considering her usual standoffish nature towards strangers, matching Inga almost to a tee. The frustration from not knowing the explanation for it all was almost too much to bear. 


Of course, she didn’t fail to notice Eli backing away as if her mere presence offended his highness and promptly shot him another seething glare before he could turn away completely. It was undoubtedly for better or worse that Aaron had become a sort of buffer between the two of them; He was caught in the crossfire but likely prevented further escalations as well.


She looked back at him as he continued his line of questioning, watching him for a few beats. 

“It’s been…fine. Challenging but fine,” She admitted cautiously while eyeing him. And just as she was about to ask him in return, she instead caught Agni edging around the curly-haired black dog and closer to Aaron. What is she doing?..

“What the hell is happening?!” She hissed as her eyes shot from Agni to Aaron. Sultana’s head shot up in response as her ears flicked back towards her. Wait had she just said that out loud? Shit. As soon as she realised her mistake, her eyes shot around and landed on the white abyss to hopefully play it off as a comment on the weather. 

“Uhmmm…what… about you?,” She tried nervously in a half-assessed attempt to gloss over her outburst.



There was a slight concern in Aaron’s eyes when he glanced towards the two black dogs. Caspian bared his teeth and growled as the other black canine edged around him, but quickly snapped out of it at the sound of Eli’s whistle.


“Caspian, here.” Eli called as both borzoi were technically his. It wasn’t normal for Caspian to react like that towards other dogs and he did not want to have a dog fight on his hands. Not that the other dog showed any aggression, but it strayed awfully close and didn’t seem to react to Caspian’s warning. Caspian threw one last glance towards the other dog and then walked over to Eli very obediently.


Relieved Aaron brought his attention from the dogs and back to Ms Lund.
“Yah it’s been fine for us as well… But what do you mean?” He asked, wondering what she was referring to earlier. Was she concerned about the dogs too? But if so why did she let hers walk so close, she hadn’t even made an attempt to call the dog.



Agni looked towards the other black dog at the sound of its snarl, taking a more standoffish stance but otherwise showing no signs of approaching further. Inga’s eyes snapped to Eli again at his whistle, eyeing both the other dog and him. The dog, Caspian, didn’t seem to like Agni one bit and it was a relief he moved to Eli’s side albeit with some hesitation. That could have ended badly, and it wasn’t as if she could control Agni either. The canine just...did whatever it was going to do. And she definitely didn’t blame other dogs for being on edge about this big menacing-looking “dog” who didn’t act like a normal dog. Hell, sometimes even she wished that Agni wasn’t around. 


To more relief, Agni just snorted at the tenseness between her and Caspian, walked a bit further away and sat down nearby to look at Aaron. Inga followed the four-legged beast with her eyes while she scratched her chin nervously. Sure Agni, way to make things weirder by staring at the guy. She internally rolled her eyes and exhaled deeply. 

“That’s…good,” She hesitated and pressed her lips together, mulling over how to even begin to diverge the convo away from the outburst. That was increasingly hard to wrap her brain around as the tiredness from being so tense washed over her and a headache slowly came on. Sultana seemed to feel it too if her shifting uncomfortably in place was anything to go by. 


“and...nothing,” Inga finally let out and paused as she exhaled deeply again and looked out into the white abyss again. Aah fuck it this was already awkward, what’s more of the same, “I just- do you…use pheromone perfume?” The implication of what she just suggested had her shifting uncomfortably in her seat for the first time. But this was ridiculous and she needed answers. 



Awkwardly, Aaron directed a glance toward Ms Lund’s dog, finding it just sitting there, staring at him. He turned to look at Eli and he was too staring at this weird dog. What Ms Lund then said next however brought both of their attention back to her.


“Excuse me, what?” Aaron couldn’t help but blurt out in surprise, meanwhile, Eli was choking a laugh behind him. That was nothing either of them would have expected to be said from this woman’s lips. “Pheromone perfume? Why would I use that? Are you smelling something?” he asked and took a sniff from the cold damp air, but he didn’t smell anything else than maybe wet wood from the sheds and the scent of forest. “I don’t smell anything.”



Inga clearly didn’t seem to be the only one finding Agni’s behaviour strange by the looks of Aaron and Eli’s stares. Her hat shifted back a bit as she dragged a hand down her face in frustration. 


She couldn’t quite make herself look at them and instead adjusted her hat but her attention shot back to Aaron at his own outburst. Clearly, her question was as much of a surprise to him as it had been to her. When Eli suddenly choked a laugh, her eyes promptly snapped back to him with another hard look. This was all bordering on absurd and she was quickly losing the little patience she had regained to figure this shit out. 


No, no I’m not…smelling anything,” She answered as her eyes shifted back to Aaron, though she did take her own whiff of the air, second-guessing if that was it, “No I’m…just…sensing…something…about you” Her voice trailed off into grumbling. This sounded very weird at best and insane at worst, and she really didn’t like it. 



That could mean so many things and nothing at the same time. Aaron didn’t really know what to say or if he even wanted her to elaborate, so he just stayed quiet from there. She seemed to feel awkward about the whole situation as well, so maybe she also preferred that he did not ask further.


To make things worse, the wind changed and sent the rain straight into their faces again.

“Ok, I’ve had enough.” Eli declared and didn’t even bother to assess if Aaron was coming with or not before making his way.


“Oh- ok.” Aaron was not late to follow. This interaction had become too awkward even for him at this rate. “Goodbye, Ms Lund. I hope the rest of the event will treat you well!” He could still be polite.



The silence that ensued really put an emphasis on the sheer awkwardness of the whole situation and Inga could all but press her lips together while she avoided eye-contact. Well, at least she knew now that the feeling wasn’t from anything physical nor to do with any…pheromones. God, that was not her finest moment. And she was relieved when Aaron didn’t take the questions further. But that begged the question, what was it then? What natural phenomenon or real thing could explain it? If not did she have some sort of sixth sense but if so why towards him of all people? The questions in her mind kept piling up with little answers as the headache worsened, making it hard to think clearly. 


Her thoughts were also rudely interrupted by a change in the wind direction, blasting the needle-like rain into their place of refuge instead of past it. Eli promptly announced his departure without hesitation and Aaron soon followed. 

“You too,” She managed to mutter just loud enough for them to hear as she followed them with her eyes. Agni and Sultana too watched them leave with curiosity. 


After a minute or two, Inga got enough of the blasting rain as well and nudged Sultana forward so they could be on their way while Agni followed loyally by their side. Hopefully, this all hadn’t put them too behind everyone else.



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Inga and Agni belongs to SofiesDrawings 

Eli, Aaron, Lady, Qora, Sultana, Maja and Caspian belongs to me~
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abosz007's avatar

well that's a tense situation and a half 8/D Inga sure lets Eli know how she feels about him fhsjsehsjd i wish for them to get along because both are such cool people 8/T they just need to realize that lol Aaron just being so wholesome between them. LOOOVVEE the image and the cold wetness you guys captured, also the many many details QQ