There was low mist that hung with the rising sun, of soft cold that did nothing to deter the birds from their spring time songs. Micaiah had been awake for longer than she cared for, feeling the drowse of minute naps that had all but overwhelmed her nights as of late. Paranoia really, if she were to be honest. She knew it true after all. It was hard not to be when a lone herbivore was keeping to the crevices, the shadows of the mountains; in order to hide herself from hungry predators ready to fatten themselves on the bounties of springtime. More than once had she caught a whiff of a big cat though she'd always seemed to outrun them, or so she was hoping. Well they certainly weren't there now so that was the relief she would get that morning.
A shiver ran along her flanks, her tail waving once to dislodge what dew it could before she revealed herself from the shelter of a small tent of trees. A deep breath burned her nostrils from the mountain cold, the sound of water emphasizing the at feeling by reminding her why it was so cool. Not that she minded, it was a pleasant sound, smell, and thought to the mare. It had all helped to keep her hidden from cat eyes after all, why shouldn't she be grateful? Not to mention there was an abundance of rich greens ready to be her breakfast! Truly, the only thing that could have made the morning better would have probably been some company. And some sleep, definitely some real sleep but she'd get that later... down the mountain. Yeah...
Giving herself one last good shake, Mia slowly brought herself through the thinned trees. Pale hooves clicked solidly against stone or left heavy indents in the softer soil while her ears kept the lookout for her. Nothing too out of the ordinary- peaceful all the way to a nice grazing spot she'd most likely spend the day satisfying herself with. The air smelled heavy with moist earth or wet rock, making that a little too difficult to nose through... And that left her eyes which only told her the coast was clear. Good enough for her- breakfast time it was.
Ayasha hated being alone. It was certainly not the life she had envisioned when she had left her parents to create a new life. She'd dreamed of joining another of the northern herds, of being part of a community but instead, she was stuck in this cycle of loneliness. Each day was another fight to survive, keeping away from predators and cruel bachelors. How she longed now for the protection of her birth herd.
She picked her way through the trees carefully, each step purposeful and soft as she aimed to remain as quiet as possible. As the day began, insects awoke and she whacked at them with her tail in an attempt to keep them away, but still a few made their way to her shoulders causing her muscles to twitch. Oh, how she wished they would leave her alone.
As she drew closer to the river she paused, scanning the area with dark eyes. For a moment, she believed she was alone. Then she spotted something amongst the trees, barely. The dark coat of the other mare provided good camouflage in the dappled shade of the trees but sure enough, she was there. A potential friend, perhaps? She was sure that anything would be better than being alone and so, swallowing her pride, she altered her course.
There was a strange quiet, aside from the bees and the birds. The air had slowed to stillness with only the river's soft rumble there to remind the mare to pay attention. Not that it was particularly hard to do just that, able to hear the skittering of smaller mammals through what woods there were, hear the birds with their nests and their social flocks. A lazy morning is what it was turning to, pressing down on the drowse Mia was already fighting before her ears picked up something unusual. At first she'd thought it a rodent or something, a squirrel that fell from a tree perhaps. Skittering and scattering about but the sound was too smooth, not excited enough for that. And it drew closer.
With more calm than she thought she would've had, Micaiah raised her head from her grazing. Her ears swiveling until she found the location of the sound. The morning's mist had begun to fade by then, leaving some small cloak of cloud to cool the ground but it was hardly enough to cover the trees as well as it did in the morning. That was probably why it had been so much simpler for her to spot the lither form of a younger horse coming toward her. That or it had been the fact that the other hadn't exactly been stealthy in trying to approach the older mare, especially since her coat would have hid her quite well if it hadn't been for the deepening greens and lightening mists.
"Good morning." The dapple had returned, keeping her own voice soft for the sake of the gentleness she heard. Friendly enough a greeting and there didn't seem to be any scent of other horses in the area. A quick she with her ears, the slight waving of her head to check; all proved that to be true. A cautious paranoia to be sure but one the mare was happy to entertain for the simple pleasure of being unbothered by the more rigorous of her equine cousins. Still, it was only natural for her curiosity to bloom and for her subtle happiness at finding a amicable soul so randomly in the morning (though it could be argued the other young one was more of the founder) to brighten even further. Of course, she only showed simple hints of the first and kept the second comfortably hidden behind her usual serene mask.
Yet even so, she couldn't help but wonder. "Pardon me for asking, but have you by chance been separated from your herd? Or are you striking out on your own? It's rather unusual to see another mare alone up here." Not that she could talk yet it was still too hard not to ask. A stray thought, more of the memory; of the young of her own birth herd had prompted the question just as readily as the curiosity. Some short play at worry picked at her mind which was why she'd bothered to not settle for the second of her questions to be the truth. It was never strange to see a lone mare freshly broken off from their birth herd- again, like herself.
Birds fluttered beneath rosy clouds, casually diving towards distant, rushing waters before swinging back to the vast sky. The mare stood at ease in a modest grazing field, the tree line easily visible as well as a whimsical mountain range. Fresh dew droplets bound to the lush grass, each rushing eagerly towards the edge of a leaf before plummeting into the soil. Yavi stood still, breathing in deeply; the air was enticing and fresh. The dark coated mare gracefully trekked onward, stopping occasionally to carefully inspect a wild flower, or to thoughtfully observe a perched butterfly. Yavi was curious in nature and today she was carefully studying her environment.
Absent-mindedly Yavi strolled towards the tree line. The canopy casted dazzling shadows across the landscape. The forest hugged the moisture, releasing scent spores of bittersweet flora into her surroundings. The mares stroll was abruptly halted. A thick bramble had snagged her tail, tangling it in its spidery tendrils. Yavi sighed in annoyance, unable to fully turn around to pluck the plant away with her snout. Yavi tugged, her tail freeing itself from the plant. She smiled at her minor accomplishment, before tripping on a large tree root. She squealed in bewildered surprise as she clambered to the ground. I'm so clumsy today! First my tail and now this? The mare snorted and rose gently until she was standing firmly on the ground.
Droplets of water rolled slickly down his chin, gathering at his jaw before dropping back to the water that crawled beneath him. The moon shown down, an muted glow that hardly broke through the haze of darkness that cloaked the land. The chill that spread throughout the land was a bit odd for this time of year, though he rather enjoyed it. It meant that most of his kind would be snuggled up to avoid the chill. He would practically have the night to himself. If he were one for prowling, that might have made him giddy. Instead, it didn't get his hopes up or dash them. He enjoyed the silent moments, when one could grasp them. When one could simply enjoy the night alone and pretend that they were the only one the gods had deemed worthy to spit onto this, for lack of a better word, miserable place called Earth.
His head jerked upward at the thought, lips curving in a half-hearted smirk that didn't quite reach his eyes. The spots on his pelt seemed to nearly twinkle in the moonlight, as he turned from the water and back toward the meadow. The whistling of the wind was the only thing that disturbed his otherwise silent night. He tested the wind, gathering up the joy that pillowed in his heart at the fact that he was absolutely alone. Black locks slashed haphazardly at his hocks, as though a flag one posted up to claim a certain plot of land. His neck was stiff upon his bodice, muscles compacted and bunched together, always wrought with some unknown tension that plagued his mind and body. He could hardly make out the bushed that dotted the meadow ahead, as he took a few blind steps forward into the grasses that waved weakly at his hooves.
He wasn't much of an insomniac, but tonight he wasn't planning on letting sleep snatch any of this time away. His hooves clutched at the grasses, as though they might rip the blades up with the force of his steps. His eyes seemed almost hollow, void of emotion and unwilling to reflect the subtle moonlight that pressed through the cloudy night sky. He lowered his skull and brushed his nostrils along the blades, scenting the creatures that had been here not long before. Lipping at the blades as he moved along, his head hung low along the ground, ears perked upward to catch any sound that threatened to interrupt his random roaming. Nighttime had made a slow crawl to daylight and as he met the parting of the treeline, he herd the rustling of grass and the murmur of voices up ahead.
Almost as though on cue, the grass ahead rustled and a thud sounded out. Lazily he drew his heavy skull upward and cocked it to the side. He tested the air and growled quietly, as though some inner beast was responding to the unwanted interruption. He moved through the treeline and his dark eyes immediately sought out the gaggle of mares that gathered in the field. One seemed to have lost her footing on her way to join the other two down the way. He approached from the side and situated himself along the path she'd been trekking toward the two. He eyed the root that seemed to be the cause of her problems and bit his tongue at the sarcastic remark that threatened to slip out. Instead, he turned his gaze to the other two mares and stood in place, watching their reactions and waiting.