The Handler stared at her partner nervously.
The Hunter named Eclipsen stood at the edge of the camp, glaring at the Elder's Recess with his arms crossed. He was squeezing his arms so tightly he could feel the claws of his modified Girros Vambraces slightly poke his skin through his armor.
The Handler, her true name Hether, watched from one of the Canteen tables built for off-base camps. She had watched him conquer the New World, but both of them were wary of their next target.
Nergigante. The Elder Dragon had interfered with both of the operations meant to drive away the gargantuan Zorah Magdaros, which was more than enough to gain Eclipsen's ire.
He was still nervous though. He, who had faced Fatalis and lived to tell the tale, and one of the hunters who had slain one of the three recorded Shagaru Magala. He was still nervous to face Nergigante, who was but an ant compared to both the Black Dragon and the Frenzy Beast.
Eclipsen would never admit that he was nervous, not that he verbally said anything anyway.
Hether saw it clearly though. She could tell that her partner was agitated, like every monster in the New World since Zorah Magdaros had arrived.
His posture was painfully straight and his mouth was stuck in a frown. His pale white hair was so still that you could tell when a breeze blew by.
In all honesty, she couldn't deny that she was attracted to him. His slicked back mane of hair paired with a Van Dyke Moustache and Goatee struck a cord with her.
Despite the painful memories behind it, even his eyepatch made her heart leap when she saw it. He fit her knight in shining armor complex better than she expected, and there was more than one instance when she questioned wether she was simply attracted to him, or if it was love.
Upon her inspection of him, she also took in his choice of gear for the upcoming hunt.
He wore a Dragonking Eyepatch that had hid his damaged left eye. Below that, he wore Beta Odogaron Mail, Beta Girros Vambraces that had been modified so that the metal claws extended to his elbows, Beta Death Stench Bowels, and Beta Girros Greaves.
Hether noticed that Eclipsen liked red and black, and colored his armor to fit his preferred color scheme.
"Are you ready for this?"
The Admiral, who they had forgotten was standing to the left of the camp, spoke. Eclipsen gave a glance, before nodding his head.
After a few seconds the Hunter moved to equip his weapon for the quest. His Palico partner, nicknamed Sundancer, watched curiously behind his skull shaped mask.
Hether stood to retrieve her book and register the quest, glancing as Eclipsen strapped the Heavy Bang shield to his left arm.
Unlike most hunters Eclipsen was right handed, meaning that he had to go without a Slinger for his first hunt in the New World while the Engineers made him a customized one.
Hether sighed as she finished signing Eclipsen's mark into the quest book before closing it and approaching her partner.
"Be careful, alright?"
Eclipsen's crimson eye looked deep into hers, wordlessly conveying both his confidence and his underlying fear.
"Don't worry Meowster! We're gonna give that dragon a pawful of pain!"
Sundancer meowed as he pumped his arnored paw into the air. Eclipsen gave a smile and patted Sundancer on the head.
The Admiral approached the three, bearing a confident smile.
"Remember, Nergigante is aggresive, but it is starving. It'll be slower than it would be if it was well fed. Use that to your advantage."
Eclipsen's expression hardened into one of determination and he cracked his knuckles under his gauntlets.
Hether felt a blush come to her cheeks upon the Hunter's display, but quickly shoved those thoughts to the back of her mind and returned to the task at hand.
"Do you want me to call in Ayla?"
Ayla was a fellow hunter that had joined Eclipsen in barging into the Fifth Fleet ships at the last second, and had in fact been a fan of Eclipsen.
She had been a trusted companion and hunting partner, as well as a very good drinker, having easily out drank multiple hunters before challenging her idol. They had tied, in the end.
Eclipsen gave a shake of the head, signalling that he wanted to go solo. Sundancer sunk a bit upon knowing that he wouldn't see Ayla's Palico, Strida.
Hether nodded as Eclipsen applied the last touches to his equipment, namely his Intimidator Charm, Health Booster and Vitality mantle.
After packing away his gear and properly tying the Heavy Bang sword to his waist, Eclipsen began to walk towards the Elder's Recess.
Hether watched as the Hunter moved away from the camp, her eyes beginning to shine with nervous tears.
Hi there, everyone. This one is gonna be a bit weirder than some of my other stories, and I hope I can write it without it getting too weird.
Please, leave a review or two, and enjoy.