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Directionless. lost. [Jaune/W'kano Private]

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{Thread takes place a short time before Jaune arrives in Gridania a green adventurer. }




Something had smeared the man's perception of time into an incomprehensible mess. Jaune's mind and spirit were guilty of that charge, having been sunken and swallowed since leaving his 'home' in Ul'dah. Weeks were days, and the month that had passed hardly seemed to exist at all. With eyes to the earth, Jaune had not spotted the sun rise or set, nor had he witnessed the beautiful stars scattered gracefully throughout the unpolluted night skies.


A safe travel had dulled his very self, hardly a noticeable bump on his journey to - somewhere . Somewhere away from the bloodsands. Alas, an journey planned infinite would doubtlessly have it's troubles.


Trouble indeed came, on a moonless night on a long and winding road to Gridania. For the past few days, he had unintentionally melded into a group of merchants travelling to the city-state. At one point, he could hear the chattering of his temporary companions through the clutter in his mind. Then, the next moment it seemed they had vanished. Jaune, having been lost in thoughts all alone, had not noticed the direction they had gone. Nor had he realized that his feet were carrying him forward through a pathless woodland. For the first time in weeks, he was truly awake.


Jasper eyes once cloudy now shone with a frightened alertness as they opened wide to asses the mess he had wandered into. He had no idea where he was, how far from home he had traveled. When had the sands disappeared? Where did the lush forest begin? There were no giant shelled creatures, no familiar howl of the desert wind. Instead, annoying insects flew around him, and blades of grass tickled the ankles sand once itched. It would have been peaceful, had Jaune not been utterly lost. It would have been peaceful, had Jaune not felt like he had walked into his coffin.


Panic-stricken, Jaune darted through the woods with head swiveling back and forth in search of something familiar. Alas, it was all for naught. Mysterious creatures and naked trees of spooky design were all that greeted him.


He wandered and wandered until his will could no long proceed with the pointless effort. When he could carry forward no longer, he threw his back to the nearest tree and slid down the bark to the ground. There, he sat in defeat. Palms covered his eyes as he began to cry. A few minutes of this led to sobs. Sobs which under normal circumstances would have been stifled. However, to the poor lost boy, he assumed that there would be no way another person would have a chance to hear the pathetic noises.


As he spoke his final prayers in the names of his beloved family, recounting his memories with them, he failed to notice that in the distance a knight had been en route to his rescue...[/i]

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Trudging through the grass, dirt, and water had been hell on the knight's legplates, which were muddied and had bits of grass sticking off of it. The helm of the knight was lowered, leaving just a mud covered metal husk with a massive claymore upon it's back walking towards the traveler. As the metal husk approached, it began waving, a feminine voice coming from within "Excuse me sir, have you seen anyone come through this way?" before beginning to jog forwards.


As they grew closer, you could make out more details upon the armor, and the form of the figure that wore it. The armor was clearly for a woman, as it was a smaller set than that of a man, a white tail now covered in mud swishing behind the knight, who stopped in front of you putting their hands on their hips. After a moment, the figure reached up, pulling up the visor as it revealed a feminine face beneath, with a few scars and bandages upon it, but definitely that of a female Miqo'te, the ear armor confirming that.


She smiled brightly, rubbing behind her head as she said "Sorry, bit rude to ask a question without introducing myself, my name is W'nako Khiki, I'm searching for someone who got lost in these woods." holding out her hand to the traveler as she continued "Any help would be appreciated."

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Jaune had not understood the other from such a distance, yet he responded to the voice. Not with the returning of a shout - but with the widening of his eyes.


The approaching figure had gripped his heart once he saw it approaching. Death, he was sure, had come for him. Perhaps those metal beasts of people were commonplace bandits. For all he knew, that was the case in these lands. Jaune's mind raced to find an appropriate plan. He could not fight, nor could he be bothered to run any longer. So - lay there and accept the death no doubt marching it's way to his soul...that was his only option.






The man's eyes closed whilst he listened to each drum of his chest, appreciating the sound for one final time. Muscles tightened with fright as the stranger approach, fingers grasped anxiously at the grass beneath him.








By the time the stranger had approached close enough to outright kill him where he sat, he had more than accepted death. Thus, when they - no - she reached out not with blade, but with hand, he had nearly swallowed his tongue.


Her voice, her presence, the simple reminder that - no, he was not stranded alone - completely blew his fear out of the water. Instead, fear was replaced with a mighty embarrassment. He could only imagine the thoughts she had hidden about a man like himself, crying like a child lost in the market and wanting for his mother.


With a new-found urgency Jaune wiped his wet cheeks and took the hand offered to him.


" W'kano? I'm..uh, Jaune. " He withheld the surname, for fear that it's value might have miraculously maintained itself so far from home. Within the stillness of the aging night, he could hear his heart beat picking up the pace once more. Was it fear? No, not any longer. It was simply the mystery of...human interaction in such a strange scenario. An unknown woman approaching clad in armor, claiming to be searching for a lost man. Was he the one in question?


Shifting on his feet with a bit of uncertainty at the thought, he gave a quick look around the vicinity. "I'm...I might be the man you're looking for..." His voice was quiet in this moment, not wanting to hear himself admit the aforementioned fact. "I'm...lost." The truth and depth to those words were more than she might have considered at the time.


But, guide him she would. Again, with more truth and depth than she may have considered.

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Her face brightened instantly as you said your name, nodding as she replied "Yes, you're the name I'm looking for!" looking like she was about to jump from excitement. Her tail was standing up tall as she continued "You've been out here for quite some time, do you need any food? I have a bit of extra food on me, but we should probably head back to Gridania as soon as possible... I don't exactly like being in these woods for too long." brushing some of the muck from her armor as she looked at you.


She sounded genuine, and her eyes were still bright as she started to tug you with a surprising strength before you could reply. She was stronger than she sounded, and tugged roughly at your sleeve as she said "Your friends have been looking all over for you, those merchants seemed pretty worried when they finally asked for help at the tavern I was in." She started to talk your ears off about who had been searching for you, before finally stopping so she could catch her breath, the both of you stopped in the middle of a swamp as she looked around, scratching behind her helmet and muttered "The road was somewhere near here... Was it at the crooked tree, or the one with the burn marks?"

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