Let Barreling Bears Barrel

Title: Let Barreling Bears Barrel
Time Period: January 1, 135 A.E.
Characters Appearing:

Summary: Though he will undoubtedly make things right at a later date, and follow his feet back home within the afternoon — Jørn's emotional disorder presents itself abruptly, taken out in the name of a search that can hardly be called one. It goes on only until the cavalry comes, and ends almost as suddenly as it began.

After leaving Jain and Bridget, it was not perhaps the wisest thing for Jorn to start investigating the farmsteads in the opposite direction of where Bridget was headed, on his way up to his cabin in the edge of the thick forest. He knew Jain was right- he couldn't function in the state he was in, at least not properly. And just maybe, he was afraid to go immediately to the Manor, for fear of what may lie there for him. He will find his way there tonight, but at the moment- well- his mental and emotional state could be a lot better.

And possibly his manners as well.

A bear's nose is one of his most treasured tools, aside from the fact that a bear is in fact, a bear. Jorn has already stopped off at one farm along the road, and in leaving them with a mess, moved onto the next. He isn't getting any closer to his goal, no matter how many fences he breaks down, and no matter how many farm animals he sends into panic; try telling that to him, though.

For lack of bear-proofing, the owners of the farm he is now rampaging about on have blockaded themselves inside the house, and are peering woefully out of the windows as Jorn knocks his four-legged way around the paddocks, coop, and barn, which he now occupies. The loose chickens from the now-flattened coop gather fearfully across the lawn; the old farm horses are still in the stables of the barn, and even past the ruckus inside, terrified equine squeals can be heard. A hangover remains a hangover, and the bear shambles back out of the barn, growling, heading away from the horses. Jorn's mouth is rimmed in spittle, and the dark eyes set in his head have taken on a glazed quality, the whites having long turned a shade of red.

It hasn't been a good day. And truth be told, he could even still be under the influence of his drinking-til-dawn.

There are a number of standard calls for assistance while on guard. My horse has gone missing or there's a drunken brawl in the square. Arguments and petty thefts and suspicious characters.

This morning, Jorn is tearing through farmland in a rage on the edge of town. Whatever that means.

So imagine Algernon's surprise when he thunders up at a gallop (one last call at the end of his shift) to see an angry bear rolling through the wreckage, teeth and nose and claws. Imagine it because it doesn't show overmuch on his face, save for a certain blankness that draws his left hand tighter about the reins and slacks his jaw. The horse he's on has less dignity about it — sudden doubt translated through the knees at a jitter and toss against the bit that leads him back a step …into a section of ravaged fence. A hock caught in wire spooks panic from haunch to forelock and the brown beast rears and twists, dislodging himself from the fence and Algernon from the saddle.

Whud.

He hits the roadside with a grunt in a flap of coat and scattered snow, slower to get to his feet than the presence of a polar bear on the loose probably calls for. But it's not really a bear, is it?

"Jorn!" carries low over the snow, hoarser than he'd like once he's able to pull air all the way back into his lungs. The Dornie-ish iteration of yo bear.

While not still half asleep, Luna's not awake enough to fully realize exactly what's going on. More than one rider has passed her by on the road, spraying her lovely dress with frozen mud and snow. The chickens racing by have her opening her eyes a fraction of an inch wider, simply because she hasn't heard any talk of wild ones roaming the area. She bends, arms out, presumably to chase one down, but thinks better of it when she's in the position. Sniffing, she straightens and pulls her wool cloak a little tighter around her to hide from the cold. She has better things to do, there's campion and mustard to buy.

The commotion of man and horse gives way to her confused expression. Then horrified one as she spies the rider hitting the ground. She's still quite a ways away but it doesn't stop her from pulling her skirt up enough to run with both hands. "Are you al— " Fully awake now, she sees what the horseman is yelling at. A big white bear in the middle of the farm. "Oh… no…." The place she was headed to make her purchase. "Jorn! Jorn Beartooth!! You stop this nonsense straight away! You've scared the chickens!!"

Sometimes people actually do go borrow cups of sugar. Or at least they pick it up from people who supply it and pay for it legitimately. Word travels fast, even in the farmland, and it's hard to contest with evidence as hard as broken fences and scattered livestock. So it was that Mairi Fairbairn heard of the rampaging polar bear.

Instead of riding straight back to her farm, she decides to cut the bear off at the pass. After all, a polar bear wrecking farms isn't likely to just happen in the wild. And for Jorn to decide to just do something like this on his own? Stealing pies was one thing, but this…

The widow rides closer, the dark brown stallion beneath her snorting as it hears shouts. It's but moments later that she sees the situation fully. She rides up beside Luna, one hand on the reigns of her horse and the other holding a pitchfork which she borrowed from the farm she was just at. Don't worry, she'll return it.

"Miss Owens! Be careful. I've seen Jorn as a bear before but this is… a little out of character. Something must be wrong. I don't know what he'll do." Mairi's gaze turns towards the form of the bear before she, too, offers her shout of the bear's name. "Jorn."

Only hers sounds a bit more like a mother scolding a child.

The polar bear is rooting its nose along the trodden dirt in front of the house when his ears catch the sound of hoofbeats. His muzzle lifts to the air to huff it into his lungs, jaw clapping shut and open again. The air leaves him in a rushing cough, just as the horse shies backwards into the fence. Presumably, such attention helps it panic and toss its rider, which Jorn only has recognized due to the hat on his head. A good a time as any to memorize the scent he gets. Jorn ambles forward while the militiaman is still getting to his feet, ears pinning when his name is called not once — but three times —

The black nose turns towards the first female voice, quivering over a peeled lip. Jorn opens his mouth in a growl, teetering threateningly on the edges of his dish-sized paws. The threat travels from Luna to the other one — Mairi's presence is regarded almost coldly, fur almost bristling. The bear tosses his head once, shifting on his heels to take a few steps back. The horses in the barn whinny again, and the chickens flocking about seem to sense safety in flapping around Luna's ankles in numbers.

Bear made aware of his presence, Algernon — reaches blandly around in his skull for what the next step might be. Draw and shoot being the unacceptable default, he stands his ground and reaches dimly to pull his truncheon away from his belt instead. Wary, a shade hesitant. But not afraid. At least, not as much as he should be — warm leather and horse and stuffy wool. And cat.

Watching the nose move in such damp and delicate (close) proximity is queerly distracting — Algernon's brows twitch down, as if he wasn't aware noses could work this way. Most people probably aren't. On account've the first time they see it is also the last time. The bristle and toss snaps him out of it, though, glare turned quickly sideways after Mairi. He might have missed that Luna's here. What with the bear and all.

Breath filtered thin and quick in a fog through his teeth, coat clotted with snow, he blinks hard and addresses Jorn more formally: "It's been requested of me to intervene in your remodeling of this farmland." He says. "If you refuse to comply I will. …Have to arrest you."

Panicked chickens racing to the whoretesan for safety might be advised a wiser course of action. Especially when she begins kicking them away with small screams of warning. The bear is forgotten for the moment in favor of this new danger. Feathers fly as Luna Owens battles her way toward the farmhouse, away from livestock, wild bears, militiamen with hats, and pitchfork weilding widows. All Luna has for self defense is her sharp tongue.

Once safely near the door, she batters the heavy wood for entrance, only to find that the people inside feel a bit safer not letting her in. There's a risk of polar bear attacks. "Yes, arrest him… Someone should. It's not right for men to go prancing about as wild animals."

Dismounting from her horse, Mairi leads Cyrano out towards the road before leaving him there. If he can survive a dragon attack, a bear isn't likely to spook him. She turns towards the bear and, by proximity, the other two. "I don't think it needs to come to that," she says in regards to potential arrest. Her gaze comes to land on Luna and her quick retreat, her lips pressing into a thin line. Whatever words may have come to her mind, however, go unuttered.

"Jorn, I do not know why you are doing this. I know you to be a good man. You are harming the livelihoods of these people and given that this is the second farm you have been on, this is likely not some personal grudge. Whatever it is, leave these farms be," Mairi says, hands gripping the pitchfork as she stands her ground.

Jorn never pegged Algernon as a cat person, though somehow it is unsurprising. While the man is peering at his nose, Jorn considers his environs one more time, eyes flicking to and fro, the angry film on his mouth wetting the underside of his jaw. The bear's face turns to the address, ears loose at the sides of his head, and nose wrinkled in displeasure. Though Jorn does not look around to Luna when she puts in her two cents, she can hear the rumbling that it causes in him.

Don't say things like that, would you?

The tooth-filled mouth opens wide, and out comes a moaning roar, low in volume, though deep from his chest. Jorn claps his jaws closed again, approaching Algernon with all the blustering and coughing that a bear can — and considering the bulk of him, it is quite a lot. But, Algernon is not his problem. The bear veers off of that course, pivoting with a swing of the head and examining the opposite horizon, where the winter cropland is speckled with muddied white.

The club of Algernon's heart quickens against his sternum at the roar; the hairs on the back of his neck prickle and he shows his teeth. Instinct is rooted deeper than a steady awareness that he is being roared at by a man. Bears are fairly terrifying in person, it turns out.

"Luna." bitten off sharp in an aside sounds a lot like Shut. Up. he stiffens and raises his free hand to ward off Jorn's approach, truncheon stayed at his side as the less relevant weapon.

Not that it becomes an issue.

There's a veer well before contact and Fogg is left to swallow the dryness out of his mouth intact.

"Is this something I can expect to encounter often, here?"

It's not clear who he's asking.

This is all very exciting, at least it is now, to Luna. Blinking when Algernon addresses her by her first name, she's stunned temporarily. Her open mouth clicks shut a second or so after, once the bear changes course and begins its run for muddier pastures. Then she begins to run.

Fists full of dress, she races across the farmyard toward the soldier, flinging herself around him in a giant hug. "You were marvellously brave!" The exuberant paise is short lived, at least enough time for a press of lips against his cheek before she lets go and takes a few hopping steps in the same direction the bear went. She pauses her chase to look back at both Algernon and Mairi. "Well? Are we going to stop him? Who knows what damage he'll do in that shape… and we can't well blame it on a pig now, can we?"

The widow's eyes drift over to the land where the bear is fleeing to, frowning heavily. Mairi's quick to react, moving back towards her horse as soon as she's seen a general direction to head in. She grabs Cyrano's reigns as she looks between Luna and Algernon.

"The bear or the rampage?" Mairi answers Algernon's question with one of her own. She mounts her horse and grips the pitchfork again in one hand as she regards the two.

"You're welcome to stay and protect Miss Owens if you wish, but I'm going after him," the widow says, turning her stallion in the bear's direction and bringing him to a quick gallop after Jorn.

The further that Jorn walks, the lower his head tilts, until his big black nose is once again scanning the ground- though just for a moment. He then looks back over his shoulder, eyes squinting and ears down. Jorn watches as Mairi gets onto her horse, and rumbles again as she trots him into action after. He does not want her to follow him; he exhibits this gracelessly by turning back and breaking into a gallop of his own, bellowing out at Cyrano, rather than Mairi.

It is a very plain and simple get away.

After the bluff charge, the polar bear rounds a second time and takes off into the muddy fields at full tilt.

Snared up in a (painful) hug halfway back to his horse (wandering skittishly around the battered chicken coop) Algernon shakes Luna loose like he might a frilly and obnoxiously loud coat right about the time she was set to let go anyways. Not in the mood.

Not that he ever is.

"Has he ever hurt anyone like this?" is demanded of her because she's the only one in immediate earshot — not because she's his preferred source of local intelligence. Reins snatched up, horse turned, one boot in the stirrup, he strains back up into the saddle with teeth grit out against a wince. Implication being that it might be best to let barreling bears barrel.

The gelding isn't happy to see him and is even less happy about having him back in the saddle, ears pinned and hind hooves dancing too nervously into a turn in place.

"Yes! Most definitely!!" She really has no idea but it sounds like the best answer. Jorn is a giant bear and he's on the loose. Biting her lower lip, she wrinkles her nose and hold up her hand, chasing after Fogg. "Wait!! Stop!! I don't really know if he's actually hurt anyone from Dornie like that." Placing her hands behind her back, Luna rocks back on her heels before swaying frontwards again.

"I'll let you be off now," she calls as a farewell, raising her arm to wave over her head at him. Then she turns her back and skips back up toward the formhouse steps. With a pleasant smile on her face, she raps firmly on the door. Quite businesslike. "Hello in there, I see you might be in need of a little help cleaning up. I don't exactly do it myself but I can send some of the girls over… care to give a few chickens and some herbs in trade?"

Cyrano seems to startle more easily than Mairi does, though the widow does her best to soothe him and yet still urge him onward. She slows down when he changes direction and it's all she can do to keep the horse in check before calls out in his direction again.

"What exactly are you running from, Jorn Wartooth? Is it us or is it yourself?" Mairi yells, voice stern. But with the bear's retreat away, her own pursuit turns into a steady pace home.