Leaving the garden, Vahn decided to do a quick stopover to see how Mikoto was doing since she was usually training around this time. Surprisingly, Vahn found the clearing empty for once so he pulled out his Status Log to see what everyone else was up to. Most of the girls were free, which made sense considering everyone was taking a short vacation. Starting tomorrow, most of them would start venturing into the Dungeon again so they were all leisurely spending their last day. Vahn considered spending time with Milan and the youth troupe, but they would be spending a fair amount of time together as he helped Tina grow stronger in the Dungeon. Eventually, he decided to just be lazy for once, even though he also wanted to get a jump start on his projects.
Though they would likely let him get away with it for a while, Hephaestus, Eina, and many of the other girls would probably lecture him if he overworks and holes himself up in his workshop. There really was no ‘rush’, so Vahn turned his attention away from the logbook and slowly made his way through the forest after sending a signal to Fenrir. He was curious if she would be able to find him within the illusory forest or if she would get lost in the attempt. Only a few people actually knew the correct path to take, and Fenrir was definitely not one of them, at least for the time being.
A few minutes later, Vahn could hear the sound of movement in the surroundings and activated his [Eyes of Truth] to see Fenrir confusedly looking around the area and sniffing the air. She even crouched low to the ground and sniffed around, most probably trying to pick up on his trail. Though the illusory forest formation disrupted the senses a bit, each of Fenrir’s were far higher than normal and she seemed to actually be able to detect him. Right now, they were only about 70m away from each other and, though her path was crooked and she sometimes even doubled back, she was slowly but surely getting closer to him.
Vahn watched Fenrir’s actions with a playful smile while stroking his chin in contemplation, wandering how he could help aid her growth in the future. She was already increasing her strength at a steady pace, but there were a lot of gaps in her combat style as a result of the fact she fought without any real equipment. Though her [Severing Claws] helped out a lot, there was a chance she would struggle against elemental and immaterial enemies, such as Spectres and things like Sand Golems. Whenever he planned to explore around in the future, he would undoubtedly have to take Fenrir along with him so Vahn needed to think of a method to increase her capabilities. She would even travel at his side in other records, which was getting harder to grasp as time passed, so there was no reason not to invest heavily into her growth…
After a few more minutes passed, Fenrir was actually only around 10m away from him, clearly visible for Vahn, but he was entirely invisible from her perspective. Vahn wondered why she didn’t try using her [Huntress] ability to track him down quickly, which immediately caused Fenrir’s hair to raise as her eyes began glowing scarlet. This brought a smile to Vahn’s face because it showed that she was highly attentive to the link they shared and, even without giving her orders, she seemed to be able to understand his thoughts somewhat. He wondered if the link would one day develop to the point where they could share senses, much like the bond shared between Emiru and Maemi.
With her [Huntress] active, Fenrir’s speed increased greatly and she followed far fewer dead ends until she was within 5m of his position, causing her head to snap toward him. A large smile appeared on her face as she trotted over with arms spread, shouting, “Master, Fenrir found you~!” Vahn smiled and stroked her head and ears a bit heavily as she clung to his body and rubbed her head against his chest. To help her out, Vahn had transformed into his Vanargandr form, intending for it to also serve as a form of reward for her. He knew she was very fond of the form because, as she had admitted, it made her feel like they were even closer together. Fenrir was somewhat ‘lonely’ being the only one of her kind and Vahn had even considered ‘naming’ a companion for her, to which she had very enthusiastically refused, almost as if her life depended on it.
After she had finished rubbing her face against him satisfactorily, Fenrir lifted her head and tilted it to the side, asking, “Master, why did you call Fenrir~?” Vahn smiled and said, “Well, I was thinking about relaxing and playing around and thought it would be good to spend time with you. I was also curious if you would be able to find me within the forest, so good job, Fenrir.” In response to his words, Fenrir scrunched up her nose a bit and said, “It was very frustrating, almost like Master’s scent kept moving around. Fenrir thought Master was trying to trick her…” Vahn laughed and scratched the scruff at the side of Fenrir’s head as he said, “I try to avoid tricking Fenrir since I don’t want to upset you. You’re so innocent, so it would be cruel if I played tricks on you.”
Fenrir squinted her eyes a bit, clearly pleased by the affectionate petting as she mumbled, “Master has to be the best to Fenrir…kukuku~” Then, a mischevious glint appeared in Fenrir’s eyes as a strange smile appeared on her lips. Vahn felt his instincts trigger slightly and his hands slowed down a bit as Fenrir covered his paws with her own with a predatory gaze as she looked up at him. Before she could say anything potentially ‘dangerous’, Vahn beat her to the punch and said, “As a reward for finding me so quickly, I will give you a short kiss, okay?” There was a brief pause, almost as if Fenrir was considering the offer but she eventually shook her head and said, “Fenrir knows, there are things she can do without having sex with Master~.”
The entire time Fenrir was speaking, she was rocking her head from side-to-side, allowing her ears to flop about in a playful manner. Vahn shook his head in response to her words, however, saying, “Even if it’s not sex, I can’t do adult things with you yet, Fenrir. You still have to mature a bit mentally before we do things like that. I don’t want to see you fighting with the other girls for my attention or because you’re jealous of them.” Fenrir had a somewhat blank expression on her face, but the glow in her eyes increased marginally before she said, “Fenrir won’t be a bad girl…Fenrir just wants Master to touch her body and pet her lots and lots. Master pet Fenrir lots when we went on the ‘hunt’ last time…Fenrir wants Master to pet more than just her head…”
Vahn recalled the time he was ‘hunting’ with Fenrir and Lili, including the sessions where he pet the two girls’ bodies while they were relaxing. He realized now that he had probably gone a little overboard, but this was a result of his increased tensions, weakened inhibitions, and the incitement of both Fenrir and Lili in unison with each other…if he tried to say something like that wasn’t ‘allowed’, Vahn would have to admit he had done something ‘wrong’ in the past. Thus, after releasing a sigh, Vahn looked around while Fenrir began to get excited after realizing she had ‘won’ against her Master for once. She had started to realize that she could use her Master’s own thoughts and actions against him because it was becoming increasingly apparent to her that his behavior was somewhat inconsistent. He changed the way he acted depending on the people he was with so Fenrir believed she could get closer to him even faster if she ‘used’ the other girls properly…
After thinking about it, as he looked for a good place to sit, Vahn turned to Fenrir and said in a firm tone, “Okay, Fenrir, I will pet you as a reward but you can’t use this as a reason to get me to do other things in the future…” Though he couldn’t tell exactly what she was up to, Vahn could see the mischevious glint in Fenrir’s eyes because she was also bad at hiding her thoughts through her expressions. She had never gotten used to controlling her face, so it was always very clear when she was happy, sad, and angry. When she was trying to be ‘clever’, she had a bad habit of showing a somewhat crooked smile and the edges of her irises would glow just a little bit.
Fenrir tilted her head in an ‘innocent’ manner that reminded him a lot of Tiona, which meant she had probably mimicked the behavior from her. She had been spending a lot of time with the Amazon sisters while sneakily wandering around the behavior at other times. Vahn had even seen her ‘spying’ on Syr before, which also alerted her that she had been caught because she acted very awkwardly after the fact. Vahn pinched her nose before deciding to simply sit against a tree and relax since he didn’t really want to put out a cushion or anything. Fenrir’s claws might not hurt him, but that didn’t mean she was so kind to furniture and, even though she had made great strides in self-control, she would still leave marks on sheets and tear up sofas on accident.
There were no fallen trees within his artificially created forest, while their sizes were very similar to each other, so Vahn just sat against the closest one and patted his lap. Fenrir, however, smiled in a mischevious manner before crouching down in front of him and placing her paws against his legs before leaning forward and rubbing her face against his chest in an affectionate manner. Vahn was a little confused but couldn’t deny that he was somewhat curious about what she was trying to do so he reached out and began stroking around the back of her hair. He could see Fenrir tail waggling awkwardly and suddenly realized who she was trying to emulate as the image of Nanu and Anubis came to his mind.
After a few seconds, Fenrir looked up and said in a somewhat ‘lecturing’ tone, “Master, don’t just touch Fenrir’s hair~!” Hearing her words, Vahn figured out what Fenrir was up to by ‘hiding’ the front side of her body from him. She obviously wanted him to touch around her back, or more than likely, her somewhat small butt. The ‘wagging’ of her tail was probably an effort to try and ‘tempt’ him into doing it without her urging him onwards. Vahn was often surprised by how ‘clever’ Fenrir was at times and decided to see what else she would try to get away with before he had to remind her not to be a ‘bad’ girl.
Reaching his hands under her arms, which made her tuck in her body a bit as if she was trying to avoid letting him touch the front of her body, Vahn stroked Fenrir’s sides instead. She realized what he was trying to do and raised herself up again and continued rubbing against his chest while pulling closer to his body. Vahn could see where this was starting to go and stroked around her sides and lower back with his [Hands of Nirvana] active. Though it wasn’t the instant regeneration of Eva, Fenrir’s body was naturally resistant to such stimulus, but her mind and body eagerly sought it anyway. Since Vahn could even ‘defeat’ Eva, her meager tolerance wasn’t too difficult for him to overcome and Fenrir’s movements became a bit labored as a result.
As if she were getting tired of holding up her upper body, Fenrir breathed heavily through her nose before crawling up all the way and pulling her legs forward to straddle his lap. Vahn had already expected this to happen and didn’t stop her from hugging around his body tightly, something she had likely copied from Lili or Hestia, as they both had the ‘koala hug’ tendency as a result of their diminutive sizes. Vahn continued to stroke around her lower back and was surprised by how thin she was compared to some of the other girls, something that would never change unless he found a way to help her evolve further. He stroked around the small tuft of fur that led into her tail and Fenrir did something he hadn’t quite expect, as he never made any efforts to touch around the area previously.
The moment his fingers pressed around the slightly boney area, Fenrir raised her hips and tucked her head into his chest before letting them drop naturally. She didn’t even seem to notice it herself so Vahn stroked up and down on the area again, which caused her hips to raise as her tail stood a bit straighter. This was something he hadn’t experienced from Fenrir before, even though he had often brushed her hair and helped wash her during their baths. It was a very interesting thing, especially since she didn’t really seem to be too aware of it as she was engrossed in rubbing up against him, so Vahn gently pressed into the area a few times, causing Fenrir’s hips to rise more and more until she eventually realized what was going on.
At this point, Fenrir was actually almost ‘standing’ while still bent over and hugging around his body, so she was very confused by the situation. Vahn laughed a bit and explained, “I think I found one of Fenrir’s sensitive spots…” as he gently pressed into the area again. Fenrir’s legs straightened out and her bushy tail stood straight up as a confused expression appeared on her face. She looked back and wiggled her butt a little to make her rigid tail wobble and Vahn felt a bit of pressure rise in his nose at her adorable behavior. After a few seconds passed, the tension in her tail and legs started to reduce so Fenrir sat back down and asked, “Did Master do something strange to Fenrir’s body?”
More than confusion, there seemed to be a bit of excitement in Fenrir’s body as she asked the question. Vahn shook his head and said, “No, it seems to be a natural part of your physiology as a Vanargandr…” As he spoke, Vahn began to realize why she was getting excited and his ‘fears’ became a reality soon after as she hugged his body tightly and ‘pawed’ around his lower back. Eventually, one of her claws found purchase and Vahn felt an electrical jolt pass through his spine that caused his legs, which had previously been crossed, to shoot out and become rigid. It wasn’t really a ‘pleasant’ sensation, but almost like a compulsive reaction and it was a very perturbing thing to experience…
Fenrir laughed and said in a cheerful tone, “Master is the same as Fenrir~!” as she ‘dug’ her claw into the area and made Vahn’s tail turn completely rigid, He actually felt his legs were becoming strangely numb so he lifted up Fenrir by her armpits so she couldn’t reach the area anymore. She noticed his expression and her eyes widened before she averted them and said, “Fenrir is sorry…” Vahn laughed and brought her back to his lap and stroked the back of her head, saying, “It’s fine, you just got a little excited. Even I thought it was very interesting, so I can’t blame you for thinking the same.” Fenrir had a cheerful expression on her face and rested her head against his chest as she enjoyed the comfort of his caress.
Vahn wondered what else he had simply never discovered about Fenrir and he was very tempted to closely examine her body to learn more. He had already touched every part when he helped her wash, but he had never closely inspected her body or examined her racial traits that closely. Though he had the option of discovering it by using his own body as a reference, there was no guarantee the traits between a male and female Vanargander were the same. Besides, Fenrir wanted to ‘play’ around and this was a good opportunity to examine her as it would also reduce the tensions a bit since he could treat it as a part of his research.
As if she had ‘understood’ what he was thinking, Fenrir tilted her body in a playful manner and asked, “Master wants to see Fenrir’s body~? Fenrir wants Master to touch her all over, kukuku~” After wrapping her legs around his waist, Fenrir leaned her body back at a somewhat awkward angle, at least for most people, and moved her claws around her abdomen and asked with a strange inflection in her voice, “Touch~?” Vahn reached out his own fingers, though it would be more accurate to say claws, and traced the paw-pad of his fingers around her simultaneously soft, yet taut, skin. Because she was very thin, without any real sign of fat or developed muscles on her body, Fenrir’s body was a bit different than others girl Vahn’s had touched.
Vahn activated his [Eyes of Truth] and pressed into the areas of interest, primarily the ‘unique’ nerve clusters on Fenrir’s body that others didn’t have. He could see through her body and saw a somewhat ‘bright’ bundle of nerves around the base of her tail that threaded out and flowed up her spinal column. Vahn said, “I’m going to touch around your tail again, lean forward…” Fenrir followed his words happily and simply used it as an opportunity to hug him again. Vahn pressed into the little bundle of nerve and saw them brighten up slightly as a pulse traveled to her body before reversing down and spreading through her legs. It happened in an instant, but Vahn was able to understand what was happening because of the variations in the intensity of the ‘light’ he could see.
Fenrir’s hips raised slightly but Vahn didn’t keep pressing into it so she sat back down after a few seconds. As if she already anticipated his next words, Fenrir locked her legs around his waist again and leaned back, this time until she was laying against his legs. He could see the line of her ribcage very visibly when she laid down like this and it made her somewhat diminutive chest look even smaller. Vahn ignored that and traced his fingers around the other nerve clusters of her body and, after inspected where they linked together, pressed into them with his claw, almost like it was an acupuncture needle. He didn’t actually break the skin, but it was a far more precise pressure than if he used his paw pads.
There were two small nodes around the connection tendons between Fenrir’s pelvis and her abdominal column. Pressing into them caused her abdomen to flex a bit and Vahn could see a hint of the compact muscles under her skin. It wasn’t nearly the same reaction as the cluster around her tail, but it was still pretty interesting to see. However, as he was inspecting her insides Vahn noticed a few other incongruities in her body that he hadn’t actually paid attention to in the past. Though she didn’t actually need to use them, as no food got beyond her stomach, Fenrir had all the expected organs except that their orientation was a bit ‘off’ compared to normal. It was most likely just a part of her general physiology, so Vahn didn’t really mind it that much.
The thing that most caught his eye was the fact that peritoneum, the tissue that held the organs of a person’s body together, were like an interwoven mesh on Fenrir’s body that was several times denser than normal. It was almost like, knowing that her body didn’t actually need to make use of the organs normally, it had evolved to make her body naturally shock absorbent instead. The curious thing was, this also applied to her nerves and, though she had many of the expected nodes, they were in different locations than normal while some were far thinner than normal. Vahn suspected that Fenrir didn’t even experience things like pain, pleasure, and sensitivity like other people. To test this, he moved his claws around the line of her abdomen and watched her reaction closely.
When he only put on a minimal amount of pressure, it was almost like Fenrir’s body didn’t react at all, even though Vahn could see that her brain ‘glowed’ whenever she was being touched. The actual nerves weren’t stimulated in the normal way, however, until Vahn greatly increased the pressure in his finger and was almost ‘scraping’ it along her. Vahn realized now why Fenrir was fond of ‘heavy petting’, because she was trying to feel the touch more. Fortunately, he could get around this restriction with his [Hands of Nirvana] and [Petting] as the waves of energy that radiated from his body could stimulate the surrounding nerves even if they were a bit deeper than normal. Other than her general attachment to him, this was probably why Fenrir didn’t like others petting her too much. It wasn’t that she ‘just’ disliked them, but that she didn’t really feel anything when they pet her…
For around two hours, Vahn ‘examined’ Fenrir’s body from head to toe, paw-to-paw, and everything in between. He discovered that her paw pads, much like his own, were extremely sensitive to temperatures and they were almost like exposed nerve endings. When pressed roughly, it would cause her claws, which were already somewhat long when they were retracted, to emerge completely until they were nearly 5cm in length, nearly the full extent of the small finger-like appendages on her paws. As for the larger pad on the inside of her paw, Fenrir actually seemed to be somewhat ticklish there and it didn’t seem to have any other function other than being incredibly soft and sensitive.
The next point of interest was Fenrir’s rather large ears, which Vahn had always been somewhat curious about since they were a bit ‘heavy’ even on his own head. The actual thickness of the ears was incredibly thin and there were a fair number of nerve endings stretching through them. As for the connecting point to her head, Fenrir’s ear canals were high atop her head instead of being at the side, and her skull was slightly oval in shape as a result. This was the case for most Beast Humans, as only a few species actually had ears on the side of their heads.
It was a constant effort to avoid getting things like water into their ears and, those that had large ears like Fenrir, usually had an increase in the density of their interior fur. Fenrir’s normal fur was midnight blue, but she had three locations on her body where the hair was white with a slightly pink hue. These locations were the end of her tail, the tuft at the base of her tail, and the interior of her ears. Unlike the midnight blue fur, the white hairs were actually like sensory receptors and they were incredibly sensitive to things like sound, vibrations, and temperature variations. This was one of the reasons why Fenrir’s hearing was so excellent because the thick assortment of white hairs in her ears were almost like extensions of her eardrums themselves. The number of nerves around the white hairs was much larger than almost anywhere else on her body, and she was constantly receiving external stimulus through them.
This last ‘discovery’ Vahn made was related to Fenrir’s ability to open her mouth a bit ‘too wide’. Other than her bones being somewhat flexible, at least compared to a normal person’s, her jaw was actually able to unhinge and the muscles were able to stretch around 50% more than expectations. As for how her teeth and claws seemed to grow at times, Fenrir’s mana circuits created large channels through them which, when filled with mana, caused them to increase in length. It was a little ‘scary’ to see her activate it through her [Huntress], but it was good to ‘know’ what caused it to happen since Vahn could theoretically replicate such a function in the future. He thought it would be interesting to make something like a dagger that could turn into a sword. Even better, he might even be able to make a malleable weapon that could take on any form and this could potentially lead to great strides in developing armor that could reform and repair itself over time…