28 February: The Reindeer Festival - Ice-Sculpting



Ilyna made her way down the bottom of the hill, along with her was a Lossoth man, and they conversed as they walked. Once they reached the bottom, Ilyna would move toward the fire, nodding to Jaska as go past her before she'd look out to her sister, calling out to her; ''Good luck!'' The man carried on down to the area in which everything was set up, and Vide joined his position by Ruhte. The man proclaims; ''You have three hours to carve the ice into a reindeer, or something related to it. As there are four of you, you two..'' He'd pause to point to Vuohkku and Ristiinna; ''Will compete against one another, and the same for you two..'' He'd then point to Ruhte and Vide; ''After that, the two winning pieces will be judged to see who's is best. Everyone clear?''

Ruhte carefully takes her tools from her bag and arranges them neatly on the bag. She stands by a block and waits for instructions. She nods.

Ristiinna blanches. "Y-yes," she says. "A reindeer... all right, a reindeer!"

Vuohkku nods. "Got it." She turns and waves to her sister, with a smile for her, then turns back to the block of ice she's been assigned, finally allowing a dubious look on her face.

Vuohkku murmurs rather softly, "I was hoping I could get away with trying a fish. This should be... entertaining, perhaps."

Vide seems relatively confident, setting out his tools, despite his lack of experience. He'd nod to the presenter, and with that, the presenter clasps his hands, taking a step back; ''You may begin!''

Ristiinna nods to Vuohkku. "I was thinking I might try a Kantâ-vilkku beacon."

Ruhte picks up her tools and begins carving the ice. She ignores everything around her, lost in her own little world of her and the ice.

Vuohkku takes her knife and starts trying to make some headway on getting pieces of the ice off the block. She quickly discovers just how hard thick ice is. "Oof! I'm definitely going to need the time."

Ristiinna seems caught by surprise by the call to begin. "Reindeer, reindeer," she murmurs, holding her knife awkwardly. "Well, let's see. They have legs. That's right, they have legs, four of them, and that's as good a place to start as anywhere." Apparently unaware others can still hear her, she's babbling more in her usual way. She crouches and starts trying to carve from the bottom.

Ilyna claps, watching her sister for a few moments, yet leaving that to her encouragement for now. She'd then glance over to Jaska, noticing the hat, yet deciding against making a comment for now.

Vuohkku chortles. "Legs. I'll be lucky at this rate to get the antlers." She continues gamely trying.

Ruhte quietly carves. She takes a small tool and carves odd shapes into the ice as she goes along.

Vide takes a knife from his selection, and without having much of a strategy, looked to Ruhte to work out how to start. He'd nod to himself, and although he was not doing horrendously, it wasn't as great as he perceived it to be.

Ristiinna after a few moments of futile attempts to carve out from the bottom, gasps. "Of course, foolish girl, it'd be easier from the top." She starts to struggle to flip the block, can't get a grip, then says, "Or you could just do it this way and turn it later." She starts carving out the space between legs, and after a while has four uneven, ungainly, too-thick rods of ice.

Vuohkku hacks away, trying to clear down to what would make the back on one side, and leaving antlers on the other end. The result is... well, surely there's still time to make it look like /something/....

Ruhte steps back from what looks like a perfect reindeer and frowns. She pushes her hood back and shakes her head, clearly unhappy with her work. She chiseled more away until time was called.

Ristiinna tucks the knife away and with a grunt rotates the block to its side, then, straining with all her limited strength, tugs it upright, so it's now precariously balanced on its four legs. Which aren't equal in length. She claps her hands gleefully, then draws the knife and starts carving again, whittling away a body that looks like a bulbous glob, roughly longer than wide.

Vide desperately looks around at his fellow competitors, clearing struggle to depict a reindeer from his carving on the ice. There is no shape, detail, or anything that would suggest it was a reindeer. He was clearly showing his frustration, flapping his arms around and shaking his head to himself. This would only intensify when he seemed to have chipped away at a section of the ice too much, as it then snapped from the main body of the ice. He carried on, yet kept mumbling to himself. Ilyna, however, found Vide's misfortunate amusing, as she held her hand to her mouth to stifle her laughter.

Jaska | After a while Jaska looks over and raises her eyebrows at Ilyna. "I'd ask who you're hoping will win, but... well." She pauses, shrugs, then squints back toward the blocks. "In my professional opinion, though, Ristiinna's reindeer makes a pretty good mammutti."

Ristiinna has forgotten to leave room for a head, or antlers. She frowns at the ice shavings below the carving, picks up a few and tries to stick them back on, then instead starts carving a ring to be a neck, as if the reindeer's head is sticking straight out. She sticks a few flakes of ice and holds them until they melt and then freeze on again.

Ruhte steps back from her work and frowns deeper. She shakes her head and looks up at the sky a moment.

Vuohkku manages to get the upper part of her block to at least sort of resemble something with a snout, horns, and a lower back that's not at the head level. The best detail is on the nose. Which is to say, the nose almost looks a little bit like a nose. Then she looks below, and face-palms. "Legs. I should have done that first." She starts trying to chip away from the side to leave it supported while she tries to make legs. That approach mostly works, but she's doing nothing remotely like the underside of a body as a result.

Ristiinna steps back and looks at what she has. It resembles a misshapen sausage on four thick stalks with a few wild stalks sticking out of one end. Not at all like a reindeer, but it's at least some sort of animal. She claps, then starts trying to add eyes and maybe a grin.

Ilyna glances over to Jaska, then at her sister, and then back to Jaska with a shrug; ''Obviously, my sister, but the one who doesn't talk probably has a better chance.'' As Ristiinna was mentioned, she'd then look over to her, not being able to stifle her laugh this; ''Oh.. That's.. Interesting.''

Jaska nods, eyeing Ruhte's. "Well, luckily for you, hoping isn't betting."

Vide redeems himself somewhat, even if he was missing a part of the ice. It was far from a reindeer, but he seemed to have accepted that, admitting defeat before time was nearly called. The Lossoth man who made the announcements returned, taking a brief look at the work, before calling out; ''And that's time!''

Ruhte sets her tools down and looks up at he sky.

Ristiinna is heedless of the reactions of the others, or indeed, of her competitors. She seems positively gleeful. The creature, whatever it was, soon has oversized eyes, a cartoonish grin, and then another flake of ice stuck to the opposite end for a tail. She steps back to admire her handiwork and seems pleased. It could be a reindeer, a dog, or a wolverine standing on four candles .

Ilyna looks over to Jaska; ''Did you place a bet?''

Jaska shakes her head and frowns. "No. Should've."

Vuohkku sighs and steps back. She settles her knife back on her belt and shakes her hand out. It's rather sore from all the chopping. Her effort is... well, the top is almost like a reindeer. But the body is... perhaps a seal or large fish on table-legs? One hopes she's better at her task of caring for the herd than trying to depict them.

Ruhte stands back to reveal her ice sculpture. It is a large reindeer with massive antlers with strange carvings all over the body and antlers. She looks up at the sky and nudges the sculpture over a few inches. Once the light from the moon is caught in the antlers a prismatic affect is sprayed all over the snow around the bust. The strange carvings cause the rainbows to form in the shape of animals. All the Lossoth tribal totems to be specific. She gave it a moment for the affect to take shape before turning the sculpture around. The moonlight hit other odd carvings and marks, making the animals 'dance' around the deer. She stops, steps back, and gives an awkward, shy bow. The same dance effect will occur if one walks around the reindeer.

Jaska blinks a few times. "...Really should've."

Ilyna looks back to the competitors as time was called, yet did speak to Jaska as she focused on her sister and her effort; ''Who would you have put it on?'' She'd smile a little at her work, and then looks over to Ruhte's contribution. She'd blink, taking it in its entirety, before wafting a hand; ''Nevermind..''

Ristiinna is too busy admiring her own work at first until the shimmering of the moonlight happens to blink in her direction and she looks up, then gapes open-mouthed.

Vuohkku just drops her jaw, watching, and slowly shakes her head. Finally, she manages to close her mouth enough to swallow, and manage a quiet, "Wow...."

Ruhte pulls her hood back up and wrings her hands. Very uncomfortable with so many eyes on her.

As time was called, the man made his way around each piece of work, alongside two other members taking the role as a judge. Naturally, as they reached Ruhte's work, they'd all seem rather surprised that such an effect can be mastered through the ice sculpture, and both nodded and smiled as they walked past. After inspecting them all, he'd meet back in the middle to call out again, which was after he had conferred with the other judges; ''Vide and Ruhte! I think it is quite clear to see who the winner is, given the sudden reveal, and so Ruhte takes the win!'' He'd wait for an applause, before turning to Ristiinna and Vuohkku, taking more time to contemplate; ''Both of these works are.. Very different interpretations of a reindeer, yet the Judges + have chosen Vuohkku's from this pairing.'' He'd then wait for an applause again, before continuing; ''However.. Out of the two final pieces, Ruhte's is the clear winner of the annual ice-sculpting competition!''

Ruhte blushes and hides behind her hood.

Ruhte blushes deeper and bows. She quickly ducks down and starts putting her tools away hiding behind the reindeer.

Vuohkku looks shocked that hers was judged better than Ristiinna's, but claps for Ruhte again when she's announced the overall winner.

Ristiinna stares at the shifting patterns as she leans this way, then that, for a few moments before she snaps out of it partway through the announcement. Her attempts to hold back her babbling-brook personality forgotten, she cheers and claps loudly. "That's so very amazing! How did you ever manage to do such a wondrous thing?" She takes a few steps closer, still gaping.

Ruhte looks up and ties up her tool bag. "Carve shapes, textures in the ice. Ice catches Moonlight. Makes shapes. Seal and Bear don't dance. Carved wrong." Shrugs and stands.

Vuohkku chuckles, nodding. "It is amazing! I didn't know that was even remotely possible!" She shakes her head. "You do great work, Ruhte! Even if you're not happy with it, I'm still in awe of it."

Ristiinna seems undaunted by this explanation. She moves around to stand beside Ruhte, peering at the sculpture from that vantage point. "It's so... it's like... there's lines and... by wind and sky that's incredible!"

Ruhte blushes and nods. The shapes dance when you walk around the reindeer. Except bear and seal.

Vuohkku moves about some to get more of the effect whle the moonlight is still coming at the right angle.

Ristiinna crouches and stares from lower down. "It's such a good thing you came. I was so afraid after how I messed up so badly you might not," she says, but it's as if she's speaking to the reindeer. "Will this last a while? I need my mother and father to see it! My father might write a song about it!"

The man continues; ''Congratulations, Ruhte! And thank you to everyone else for participating! As is custom, food and drink is served in the tent.'' Many people observing had begun to walk up toward the tent, and Vide simply goes in that direction, sulking at his defeat.

Ruhte blushes and shuffles her feet. She hugs her toolbag to her chest. "How did you mess up? Um...Last few hours. Cold enough tonight."

Ristiinna straightens back up. "At the sled races," she says as if that's enough to make it obvious. "I think I'm up for some fish tonight." She almost skips back around, pausing to look at her own carving. She laughs brightly at it. "Oh, it's not a reindeer at all!" she says as if this is some sudden revelation.

Vuohkku laughs and points to her own. "I should have stuck to carving a fish!"

Ruhte shakes her head, "Don't see how." Shrugs and heads for her fishing pole.

Ilyna took herself out of her daze, trotting over toward the sister. She'd nudge her a little, wafting a hand in her work specifically, and especially the bottom; ''What is that?''

Ristiinna nods. "Well, you can eat one!" she says, and starts taking a few steps up to the Lodge, then stops and turns. She sees Ruhte going back to fishing, and frowns, and waits a moment in hesitation.

Vuohkku giggles. "Proof that I know nothing of how to carve ice! That's what!"

Ilyna chuckles, admiring her sister's work playfully, before she'd look over to Ristiinna, simply doing the same; ''I can really see the reindeer in that, Ristiinna!''

Ristiinna looks at her misshapen reindeer and laughs just a little. "Perhaps you should get a knife and carve it to reveal it then!" she says, chuckling, though a little less easily. She then continues down to Ruhte. "You could come in and join us," she says. "The fish will wait for you."

Ilyna nods, still laughing. Eventually she'd stop herself, paying Ruhte's sculpture and Ruhte a glance, before looking to her sister; ''Are you hungry?''

Ruhte pulls another fish off her hook. "Tribe needs fish. I played. Now work."

Vuohkku chuckles, smiling at her sister. "I suppose I might have done better if I had known what tools to use." She looks sadly over at Ruhte. "I wish she'd come in, too." She pouts a moment, but then turns back to Ilyna. "Yes. And cold enough, despite the chopping. And my hand hurts."

Ristiinna shakes her head. "I brought back a basket from Olavi today. Yes, we need fish, but not today, not right now. You can take a little time to celebrate your amazing triumph." She speaks with uncharacteristic confidence, but then it runs out and she adds more weakly, "If you want to join us, I mean."

Ruhte blushes and nods. She sets her pole down and sets her fish in the water to keep until she returns.

Ristiinna smiles. "I'm Ristiinna," she says to Ruhte. "I can't remember if I said that already." She turns and walks briskly back up towards the path to the lodge. "I wish I could learn how to do things like that. Maybe I could carve designs into candles."

Ristiinna nods a slightly more reserved greeting to Jaska as she passes.

Ruhte walks with her. "I'm Ruhte." She nods to the others as she walks passed.

Ilyna nods; ''Let's go inside, then.'' She'd begin to walk to the main tent, yet looks over to Jaska as she'd pass her, pausing; ''Are you coming?''

Vuohkku follows along with her sister, also looking to Jaska, and giving her a smile.

Jaska blinks at Ristiinna, worms her tongue around her teeth briefly while she looks up the hill, then turns back and gives the sisters a little nod.

Ilyna nods again, making her way up the hill.

Vuohkku chuckles. "Good. Come along, before Vide eats it all!"

Ristiinna tugs her gloves, hat, and scarf off almost as soon as she's inside, though it's still chilly away from the fires. "I hadn't heard your name, though my mother counts the fish you bring in and sees they get to the cooks. She calls you the silent one."

Ruhte grins, "My Mother called me that too." Blushes and warms her hands. She can't help but grin after her win.

Ilyna points toward the fire, looking to her sister; ''You go sit by the fire and warm up. I'll get us both a bowl.''

Jaska gets in line, takes her hat off, and pokes Ristiinna on the shoulder. "I liked yours."

Vuohkku beams at Ilyna. "Oh, thank you! I really appreciate that!" She heads over, trying not to just bowl people over, and still shaking her hand from time to time.

Ristiinna steps up and asks for a fish. Elin seems surprised, as she normally only gets broth. "I should learn how to be quiet from you. I usually talk so much I make people hate me. But there's so much to say! Oh, you know though, from the night of the storm." She accepts the fish, then turns to Jaska and smiles. "Thank you! It was a bit, well, ridiculous, but I never did that before!"

Ruhte keeps warming herself by the fire and watches the others get their food.

Jaska doesn't say anything, but she smiles kindly and appears somewhat relieved.

Ilyna wanders toward the main fire, and changes her direction of standing in line to move over toward Ruhte. She'd nod to her, even smiling a little; ''Didn't get the chance outside, but yours was really impressive.''

Jaska gets her meal and heads for the usual fire.

Ristiinna steps out of the way, then stands and watches the others at the line.

Vuohkku smiles over at Jaska, and then sighs a bit. "Aww. I was hoping to see more of that hat. It's rather nice. Not that your hair isn't!" She slowly works her gloves off, now that she's by a good fire, and winces at getting the one off.

Ruhte blushes and grins, "Thank you."

Ruhte moves away and heads to warm herself by the other fire.

Ristiinna watches Ruhte and Ilyna speaking, and nods to herself, then walks over to the fire.

Ilyna nods, and although she wasn't in the official queue, she'd nudge Elin who passes her over two bowls. Ilyna grins to her, and then everyone else by the fire, before she'd make her own way to where her sister and everyone else was. She'd take a seat on the bench, offering Vuohkku a bowl as she did.

Jaska smiles a bit at Vuohkku. "It's all yours as soon as I find something a bit warmer."

Ristiinna says in between bits of fish plucked from the bones and popped into her mouth with greasy fingertips, "Really, I'm going to ask Da to write a song about that sculpture. I would but I am just now starting to learn to write songs and they're, well, not up to the task."

Ruhte blushes still grinning from ear to ear from her win. She listens to everyone talk.

Vuohkku beams a smile at her sister and holds the bowl in her hands for the moment. She then chuckles to Jaska. "Well, as cold as I always am, I might have to admire it indoors if you do that." She looks to Ris after. "You could try anyway? But I understand wanting your Da to do the real one."

Ristiinna shakes her head, hair bobbing up and down. "I wouldn't even know where to start!"

Ilyna settles herself to ensure she's comfortable, lifting up the bowl to take a small taste. She'd would, for once, not speak and instead simply observes her surroundings, enjoying her food.

Vuohkku chuckles. "Like me, hurting my hand trying to make something out of ice? I should really have thought to ask Ruhte what I'd need. But it was something of an impulse to join in the contest."

Ristiinna says agreeably, "I only came because Mom said I should. What kind of knife do you use, Ruhte? I'm sure something with more to it than mine!"

Ruhte says quietly, "I use a hand saw, some chisels, picks. Not many blades."

Ristiinna opens her eyes wide. "Oh, there's tools specifically for that! That makes sense. I didn't even think of that."

Vuohkku nods. "That would have been a whole lot better. Especially the chisels, for what I was trying to do." She sighs. "Not that I probably would have done much better than I did. But maybe it wouldn't hurt so much now." She rubs her hand on the bowl some more.

Ruhte nods and touches her bag of tools. "Will hurt using knives. They slip easliy."

Jaska finishes off her meal and disappears somewhere.

Ristiinna sets her bone plate down, now nearly empty. "Maybe you could teach people how to do it! I mean obviously not all your tricks and techniques, but the basics. I bet people might like to know! Where did you learn it?’’

Ruhte says, "My grandfather." She touches the bag. "His tools."

Vuohkku smiles to her sister again. "Thank you, Ilyna. This does help." She nods to Ris's comment and smiles to her and Ruhte. "Now that's an idea! Though even just a better look at what tools it takes would be a start."

Ristiinna nods. "Maybe you'd wait to teach anyone until you have children, then," she says. "But you could teach some of us and then teach your own children the best parts."

Ilyna picked and played with her food, yet finished around half. She'd then look to her sister, placing her bowl down, and lowering her tone to avoid the others from hearing; ''I'm going to head back to the hut. I'm in some pain, and I suppose with everyone here at the celebrations, I should check on the herd.. I'll see you later?''

Ruhte stands and moves a little closer. She sits and opens her bag. She pulls out the tools and shows them the various chisels, picks, tongs, hand saws, etc.

Ristiinna stares, then draws her little bone knife and looks at it even more dubiously. "At least my knife is very sharp," she says with a self-deprecating grin.

Vuohkku smiles to Ilyna and nods to her. Her response is also low. "I'll be along pretty soon, then. Warm up the salve and I'll rub some in for you."

Ruhte shows the blade on the hand saw. "Not sharp. Jagged cuts ice."

Vuohkku peers over after, and finally starts eating. It's a bit awkward, since she using her off hand while still warming the sore good one with the bowl. "Mm. My knife wasn't too bad an idea - except for being a knife and hard to hold when the ice is so hard."

Ilyna places her bowl down to help herself stand up. She'd pause for a small moment, wincing ever so slightly, before she'd pick her bowl back up to return. She'd nod and smile to her sister, and then glanced over to Ruhte and Ristiinna; ''Congratulations, again, Ruhte.'' With that, she'd make her way to the main fire to drop off her bowl, and then toward the exit.

Ruhte nods to Ilyna.

Ristiinna nods. "That's why all I did was shave. That's what you do with soap, you see? If you need to shape it. So I just fell to doing that. The shavings turned out useful for making the antlers and tail though!"

Ruhte smiles, "Yes. I saw. Your reindeer was fun."

Ristiinna laughs. "Well, it -was- fun!" she says brightly. "I was surprised how much. But I'm not sure it's a reindeer." She stands up and takes her plate. "I have to get back, Da wants me to keep practicing in case I get to sing at the festival. I hope I'll see you there, though?" she asks Ruhte, eyes bright, and then turns to Vuohkku and says, "And you?"

Vuohkku chuckles. "It was fun! And that's what mattered! And I expect to take part as the herd duties allow, yes. I hope to see you both more."

Ruhte nods to Ristiinna, "I'll be there." Packs up her tools and stands. "Need see to fish." She nods to them both and heads out.

Vuohkku nods and calls after her, "Congratulations again!"

Ristiinna follows not long behind. "Thank you for the fish, too!" she calls out as she pulls her hat back on.

Vuohkku finishes her food and takes the bowl back. With a small sigh, she gets her gloves back on and makes her way out and homeward.