years I've walked in the coldest winds
from sorrow and pain I find my strength
the more I hurt, the clearer I see.
There was a certain sort of comfort to be found in the quiet darkness that surrounded the ebony panther. For a singular moment, he was able to fool himself into believing some vague fantasy of freedom. With nothing but the towering dark expanse of the forest before him and not a sign of the inevitable undead behind him, Tetradore was effortlessly able to race across the expanse of the park and into the deep dark outskirts beyond the metropolis. The sound of the city had all but died away, replaced only by the steady, rhythmic pounding of his feet upon the ground and the exhale of his own breath. It was only the sharp digging of that silver from the collar around his neck that served as a reminder of the truth of his life, those metaphorical wounds still too raw, prompting a small shudder down the panther's spine as he refocused upon that task at hand. Although that distance he'd covered was significant, it was too...straight. The last thing he desired was to be found too quickly by either of the undead, even if it was imminent. Risque, after all, had always effortlessly found him - no matter how far he went or how much time he'd stolen unnoticed from her. She always dragged him back to hell, one way or another. A soft breath left the Were-King's lips as he reached for his own affinity, letting those shadows rush to his form only for the Were-King to reappear a great distance ahead, letting his scent all but disappear from that trail only to reappear all over again.
His ears swiveled upon the top of his head, that faint crack of a twig underfoot informing him well the hunt was on. The panther's fit physique surged forward, that teleportation coming far easier now as he so fiddled with all that Matteo had taught him. From those quick bursts of teleportation to those longer distances, the Were-King all but sought to make the trail left behind by his scent as conflicting and baffling as possible - everything Darcy had demanded of him. For a brief moment, a small whisper within the back of his mind contemplated leading the vampires in a large circle, forever chasing a fading scent while he simply left them to their own devices. It was a tantalizing consideration, one that Tetradore hardly allowed to come to fruition - that lesson Risque had impressed within him should he invoke her wrath still too fresh to risk everything and everyone he cared for with some ill thought out whim. It was only once Tetradore was certain he'd placed a fair amount of distance between himself and the vampires upon his heels that the Were-King paused, his ears erect upon his head as he listened attentively to the faint sounds of those heels against the foliage underfoot. A small frown seemed to skirt over the panther's features at the almost singsong tone to his mistress' voice. God, how he abhorred the very delight within her tone, though he strove to ignore the manner in which she so attempted to goad him. All that mattered, after all, was that very hunt he led them on.
A few tentative steps were taken further away from the direction in which that soprano voiced echoed from, the Alpha entirely ignorant of the manner in which he was observed from above. His own figure was poised, ready to continue that hunt once he had some indication of the position they intended to travel within. The very last thing he'd expected was for a rock to come whizzing out of thin air, the Were-King hardly even given a chance to react before it collided into his ebony frame. A yelp left his lips as Tetradore launched himself forward the Were-King quickly dodging around several trees in an almost serpentine fashion, certainly anticipating even more of those rocks. His hind leg still ached from where it had struck him and yet, Tetradore hardly dared to pause and inspect the damage done, if any. He could hear someone smashing through the underbrush, his own speed increasing as he raced alongside the noise, striving to put some distance between himself. Tetradore had only just begun to reach for those shadows, their ebony tendrils chasing at his feet, when Darcy all but exploded through the trees, landing abruptly in front of him. The ebony panther all but bounded off of a nearby tree trunk, the jungle cat abruptly changing directions, his ears flicking ever so slightly at the sound of Darcy's gruff voice. His own pace hardly ceased in the slightest as he glanced back behind him, catching the flash of those sharpened ivories as the vampire growled in sheer anticipation. Fuck. It was that very gift of teleportation he so utilized to ensure that distance between himself and Darcy remained as it was, the shifter determined to remain just out of reach.
He hardly realized, at that moment, that Darcy was striving to guide him towards Risque, the panther's own focus dedicated to keeping that very distance between himself and the Southern man with the hopes that Risque was somewhere behind him. It was an all but faint crack of a tree limb somewhere ahead of him that immediately ensnared Tetradore's attention, prompting a glimpse of irritation upon his features. He bounded easily off another trunk, using his own speed and jump to propel him forward and guarantee he didn't lose momentum as he changed directions, purposefully jumping perpendicular from both of the vampires in some attempt to keep himself from their grasp. His own shadows easily reached out for his form in some indication of that impending teleportation - after all, Tetradore never intended to be easy prey.