The effects of the Howl were immediate. Three of the Formori turned and ran away. At least two made it, but the injured formori tripped and fell, and went nearly catatonic with fear. Two still were standing, and looking towards the two garou, their faces set in grim determination, before curling into a sadistic smile. The Gift Red used had a drawback. It affected your allies as well, and perhaps Ariel was too stressed with everything going on, but she too turned and ran, leaving Red alone and injured to face the formori. They came at her with knife and chain, but both missed, surprised by the agility of the injured garou.
It wasn't the spirit who reacted, butt Sophia who moved, and her arms embraced her packmate. "I was too harsh on you, Howls. I didn't think it my words would shake you this badly. I'm sorry. You're pack, and you deserve better. I apologize." It was somewhat uncharacteristic of Sophia, but after hearing that it was her fault that her packmate was so affected by her words, She rose to the occasion to address it herself. She sensed that unless they got past this, things would only deteriorate, and that couldn't be allowed to happen. Sophia nodded once. "Your words and your voice do matter, same as everyone else, even if we don't always agree." Silent nods from the other members of the pack affirmed this.
The spirit rose, and moved forward slowly, the light touch of her fingers slowly tracing the underside of Howls' jaw, lifting her gaze from the ground. "Words are power, they give and take life, bind and unbind, and when said cannot be taken back. Masters of words must be strong. Do not doubt yourself, or your abilities. Only you can truly set your own worth. Now, Why do you doubt yourself, and the power of your words?" She looked to Micky, and there was a tinge of disappointment, though she still smiled. A Leader must take care to see to the well-being not just of the bodies of their pack, but their hearts and spirits too." Her smile was matronly. It was a rebuke certainly, but there was still indeed time to rectify things here.
The spirit nodded at Saibh's reply, and Sophia spoke next. "I fight for myself. To see the Evil that taints this world cleansed, to hear the laughter hand happiness of my pack at the end of our battles. I fight because we Garou alone have the strength of will and purpose needed to shoulder the burden laid upon us by this War, and the sins of our past."
The spirit nodded, and turned her gaze to Howls With Wind. "And you young one?"
The Formori seemed pleased with the amount of hurt they'd inflicted on Red Tips, circling in close to go for the kill. She was still hurt, even as bones knit and her flesh began to mend. Ariel was hurt far less, but still facing the two Formori on her own. One though had greatly suffered as her fangs tore a large chunk from him, his entire right arm and upper torso tearing away under the brutal edge of her claws. Still there was no fear from the Formori, and it and it's fellow seemed to surge forward, preparing to attack again.
The Spirit tilted her head, first at Deerstalker's question, as if she was recalling something long forgotten, and when Micky spoke She stood. "I have no name to give you, for when they gave themselves, they gave their bonds to me, they gave everything, to see the Evil banished away. I could give no less, and Gave my own Name."
The spirit let out a small sigh. "Ages of power, and it was only just barely enough. So now you ask my name, I have none to give. I have only what I govern, The Ideal."
She looked to Micky. "Is your Rage enough? Yes it can drive you in battle, to slay your foes, to let you go beyond the limits of your body. That will NEVER be enough to Defeat our enemies. You must have balance, or you will fall to disharmony, and eventually, the Enemy will take you. You speak of sisters and a brother, that is good. The pack is family, sometimes moreso than any other. If you lack Compassion, or Wisdom, my gifts will eventually become a curse."
"My power is such that I can help build up what is there to its peak and even beyond, but if you cannot balance the power within you, it can unbalance and consume you. Yes I have Chosen you, your pack, to be mine. The First Pack of a new Age. You are not the strongest, but you are perfect for how my power helps you."
Her attention turned to Howls, Sophia, and Saibh, and she smiled. "I know she is your Alpha. The leader of your pack, but this Covenant requires your voices as well. I would hear the voices of those I Chose, and have welcomed to my home. She can speak for you in some ways certainly, but here, only you can accept what I offer."
As the others gave their answers, there was a pause, and then suddenly the forest seemed to end as they came to a clearing. There was a large waterfall and a pool which lead to a river flowing beyond, and a glade of grass softer than any they'd ever felt before. There, beside the pool at the water's edge, knelt an old woman. She rose as the garou approached, and before their eyes, the years seemed to melt away. Revealing a young woman who looked native american, with long ebony black hair, and dark indigo eyes.
"You have answered well, my Chosen, and so I am found by you." She smiled softly, and even with that they found themselves feeling refreshed.
"Your world is in danger, and After my Chosen gave themselves willingly, I shut myself away. It has taken much time to restore myself, to find those who could take up the mantle of my charge once again. I had hoped that you would have time to become stronger, but events are in motion that will unleash a great evil upon the land once again. I could wait no longer, and so I called for you, hoping you would come."
Red Tips' jaws closed around the leader of the formori 's neck and shoulders, and in a shower of blood and gore, bit through, decapitating him. Momentarily affraid, they Formori backed away, but then three charged at Red, lashing out with chains and a pipe, and the other two went after Ariel with their knives.
"That is why the Garou fight, why they live." The voice answered softly. "I asked YOU."
When Micky spoke, she could hear the chuckle.
"I am the One who Called you. When you reach Me, You will know Me."
The words sent a chill up the spines of all the pack present. Whoever was speaking was ancient, and held true power. This was no minor spirit.
As the pack moved, Howls couldn't really see anything out of the ordinary, nor hear anything. They were in an umbral realm, one that was truly ancient, and seemingly undiscovered.
What was out of place, and all of them, picked up on this, was a certain smell. It was blood, old, dried blood, and fresh blood, both smells coming from the direction they were traveling.
With added Haste, the pack moved on. It was a nearly 3 hour hike to where they'd thought the glow had originated, but they only found a sea of endless trees, all of them like giant redwoods of California, the smells were faint, but and on the wind, seeming to be distant, yet they could smell them clearly.
The voice spoke to them again.
"Why do YOU fight? Why do YOU Live?"
It spoke in their minds and their souls, but for the first time, they heard it with their ears, The voice was strong, yet strange. It was both male, and female.