a flexible, creative, collaborative writing game
Welcome to Canis Major
a wolf and animal rpg (role-playing game)
Canis is a writing community for play-by-post (forum-based), freeform roleplay set in a fictional dream world in the intrusion fantasy genre. Most characters on Canis are wolves; many play elements are focused around wolves and canids, but the world makes room for a large variety of other animal characters such as dogs, horses, cats, bears, deer, and many, many more.
Our community is focused on flexibility, creativity, and collaboration. That boils down to a few important features:
There is no set activity requirement to write
The setting and plot are member-created and staff-supported
The game is continuously improved to increase fun and decrease stress
It was an endless loop, constantly shifting, but never truly moving.
As for Netoran'ey, he was frozen in its timeless currents. As still as the ancient sentinels that rose from the roots and into the sky, their canopies reaching and reaching for something unobtainable. As still as the stagnant swamp that surrounded him in its pungent midst, layered with muck and weeds.
Yet when he awoke, it was with a start. A rattled, gurgled breath caught in his throat, something meant to be choked on, a hazardous cough that sought to restrict air from his lungs. Instinctively, his body pulled itself upwards into an uprooted, alarmed position, hocks still firm to the ground and yet his forelegs poised upwards, toned muscles rolling impatiently along his shoulders and backside.
Around him, he saw familiarity. He knew the lands like the back of his hand without needing to venture through them. He knew the mud, knew the reeds, knew the gnats that buzzed incessantly around his face and his ears. They flicked, shooing the insects away -- only for them to return ten fold, gnawing and hungry.
For just a moment, there was clarity. And then there was panic, the man rising with haste from his swampy graveyard, green eyes floating aggressively through the woodwork. He searched for the familiar golds of his brother, the low wretched gait he slunk about with -- there was nothing. He called out into the unknown, before he was moving, scouring the growth with little care for what he might find himself walking into... or upon.
Gurgling. That's all Ata could do. With what seemed like thick blood filling his lungs, he realized that it was just the murky waters of the land that he called home. Although it was not home, just a mere perfect replica of the lands he had grown up on. The lands his ancestral family claimed as their own and protected with a code of rigid honor and valor. Ata would not be an exception to this, despite his bountiful and nonchalant nature about all of it.
The water spewed out from his lungs with some powerful coughs. He pulled himself from the murky waters onto a makeshift bed of floating reeds, his chest heavy and legs burning. The sensation was familiar, reminding him of the times when he was a mere pup learning to swim and navigate these waters with his brother. His brother. Neto—? Was he here?
Ata scrambled to his feet, observing the vast landscape of thick mangrove trees and their roots that wrapped and braided into the ground. Something rearing his feet pulled his attention that swam dangerously close to the surface. Something scale-y. A little crocodile. A swamp puppy, as he likes to refer to them as. With a mischevious smile and curl of his lip, he was about to pounce on the thing before he heard his name call out in the mangroves.
"Netoran'ey!" Ata'ran would call back, jumping clean over the swamp puppy that lashed its tail upwards in response, disappearing the blanket of reeds and into the roots. Skittish things. Ata'ran would move swiftly through the water with precision and excellence, mirroring the image of a sea serpent.
Faster and faster his limbs would pull him as he looked frantically around for the cream and umber silhouette of his brother. Again, he would call out. "Netoran'ey?"
His pelt had begun to bristle with a building caution as he delved through the shelves of the wetlands, his eyes squinting as he gazed through the thick haze that lingered. Bitter bile and algae the wolf stepped through, webbed toes crunching and wading with haste through the thick, sickly waters and mushy grounds. There were no signs of his brother; no scent trail, no disturbed foliage. It was as if the lands were completely untouched, sitting in eternal bliss before Netoran'ey awoke in the mid of them.
“Ata'ran!” He called once more for his brother, yet he heard nothing but the echoing of his own voice. In return, the crocodiles that lurked in the underbrush and the waters hissed and groaned in response, and the wolf watched as several eyeballs breached the surface of the green waters, staring at him expectantly. His lips would curl back in response, thick shoulder turning as he moved in the opposite direction.
Through a thick patch of reeds the wolf waded, until he heard something. Something that did not sound of the scratchy wading of crocodilians, nor the patter of frogs or other small wildlife. It was large, large as he; shouldering through the brush of the swamps with a fervent speed. The wolf whirled, readying himself for whatever assailant had spotted him before he, and was now coming on the offense. Netoran'ey would meet them halfway he decided, squaring up his frame and barreling through the reeds that hid him-
A pelt of creams slapped him in the eyes and he immediately hauled himself backwards, nearly spiraling backwards into the swampy marsh waters. Bewildered, the wolf stared in relief at the form of his brother but then he growled angrily, coming to smack Ata'ran over the head with one of his wet paws.
"Skxawng! Aynga ne txopu sleyku ne kxitx?!" — Moron! Are you trying to scare me to death?
Ata'ran lurched backwards when a figure closed in on him. Larger than him by a mile, but the sun reflected the auburn hues of intangible light against his pelt. And the disgustingly familiar scent that wrapped around Ata'ran's nose— yeah, he knew who this was.
With a raise of his brow and 'what the fuck' expression, Ata'ran breathed.
"Kawkrr lam tsonta tìkangkem." — Never seems to work.
Ata'ran winced at the contact of his brother's slap. He lurched forward in response, snapping his own jaws towards the flesh. Missing, he let out a deep breath that he was holding in disappointment. Asshole. But the thought hit him quicker— where the hell were they? Was this the land they knew? Everything about it had been so similar. The water, the predators, the gnats that swirled above their heads. Ata'ran took a glance upward at the small swarm, puffing a gust of air from his lungs to scatter them.
"Lu oe skxawng fu...lu fì'u kelku? tsal doesn't 'ur na tsal. Slä tsal feels na tsal" — Am I stupid or...is this home? It doesn't look like it. But it feels like it.
There was an unmistakable presence that the terrential swamp held. In his heart Ata'ran knew this like the back of his paw. The vague, blurred memories becoming cleaner at the edges revealed a gravity of his life that circled the core of everything he knew— swamp. Maybe not the prettiest picture, but it was home.
Well, not really home...but close enough.
Something swirled by his feet. He looked down to see a small crocodile swirling around his ankles. It was small, though, clearly an adolescent. It didn't try and bite him, clearly knowing its own limits when it came to prey. Ata'ran looked down at the thing and its miscolored scales. These ones were much more blended in against the terrain. The ones from...other home donned a much pinker color to them. Weird. The young tsamsiyu didn't make any moves to scare the thing, fearing that it would only elicit a violent response.
He looked back to his brother and his stupid face.
"Ioang lu keteng fìtseng." — Animals are different here. Perhaps Ata'ran should've looked at the bigger picture. The why and the how, but that wasn't his job. That was an older brother responsibility that Ata'ran was blessed not to carry.