January Announcements || 2021 Jan 1, 2021 11:53:27 GMT -6
Post by wish on Jan 1, 2021 11:53:27 GMT -6
JANUARY ANNOUNCEMENTS 2021
On December 31, 2020 Minnowstar asked Cinderface to perform a sacred ceremony to rid the world of 2020. Because Minnowstar is obviously the chosen one and the one true ruler of the island, Starclan answered her call without hesitation. Yes, we all have Minnowstar to thank for 2021. YOU’RE WELCOME.
December was a slow month for us! But no worries! We’re sure activity will slowly pick up as we enter the new year and establish new writing routines (or return to old ones). A lot of members were busy with family, work and school, or working hard on their secret santas over the last few weeks, so we understand why activity was slow. 2020 was a tough year for a lot of different reasons, so we hope 2021 is a lot kinder to everyone!
Nonetheless, this month we have our Secret Santa reveal, OTM winners and nominations, bio clarifications and rules, new forbidden romance rules, a new individual clan map, and monthly patrols and plot updates! Not to mention! Rain shocked all of us with are very own TA emojis! You can check those out on the discord
and we can add them to the site as well in the future!
We also want to welcome Akura and videnda to The Apostles! Please check out the Newbie Guide, Clan & Tribe information, and Island Timeline, or if you have any questions, feel free to reach out to a staff member here on the site or on the discord. We’re excited to have you here!
SECRET SANTA GIFTS ---
The Secret Santa thread is live! Please check it out, even if you didn’t participate this year. The generosity and sheer talent of our members is sincerely astounding. There are so many great pieces in this collection, from memes to animation and even a song! By far -- this is our most successful Secret Santa yet!
So thank you to everyone who participated and dedicated time to make this an enjoyable holiday for our lovely little community. We can't believe we have such dedicated and talented members! Cheers!
OTM WINNERS AND NEW CATEGORIES ---
MEMBER OF THE MONTH --
On March 29th, 2008 at exactly 4:45 p.m., our good ‘ole friend moony decided to join a little site called Beyond the Horizons to do some warriors kitty role-play. Little did she know, this would change her life forever. Twelve years later, Moony is back at it again! And has been a dedicated and hard-working member of the admin team since The Apostles kicked off in 2019! Having had both important roles on TA and on BTH, it is to no surprise Moony has been more than qualified to receive (finally) a member of the month award! Give her and her characters a round of applause: Cinderface, Loudstorm, Mistflower, Fog, Sun, Aspenpaw, Aster, Eaglefang, Leafdapple, Orchid, and Sparrowheart!
Is there anything she isn’t helping out with? From organizing the rare trait rule to typing out our beloved clan/tribe updates every month (and this is a mere fraction of all she does), there is a lot to appreciate out of our most humble staff member. She is always involved in any admin discussion, and helps keep the site looking fresh and consistent with her bio reviews, allegiance age-ups, and thread maintenance. She even sets up the majority of our polls! On top of that, you can also find her in #questions-for-staff on the discord, frequently helping those in need with answers to questions of all flavors! To both the staff and our members, there’s no doubt Moony does more than anyone could ask for! Not only does she pull her weight and then some, but Moony is by far one of the kindest faces on the site! We couldn’t do it without her lovely heart and compassion.
When she isn’t focusing her attention on her various site duties, she’s cranking out the coziest posts on the site. Don’t they just evoke that warm fireplace feel? Whether it be a blood chilling post from Cinderface, or a good-natured romp from the forever growing and developing Loudstorm, it’s always a treat to catch up on the cast of Moony’s characters. In fact, LichenClan might have been a lot more different without their medicine cat keeping a keen eye on things with the gift of StarClan. How else would an entire mass confession be led?
Congrats again, Moony! We hope you continue to be a thriving and giving part to our community!
CHARACTER OF THE MONTH --
Out of all the characters on the Apostles, which cat would dress up as Santa and deliver presents across the island? Well, voted the jolliest cat on the island, there isn't anyone better for the role than Rockjaw! Played by the one and only Bandit , our cozy dad of Redwoodclan has won our character of the month!
Rockjaw isn't just an expert at delivering presents. He is also an expert at delivering moral support. If there is ever a cat to ask for help or advice, Rockjaw will full-heartedly give a speech on the subject at hand, underbite and all. Taught at an early age to be loving and supportive, it's no wonder Rockjaw not only makes a good mentor (who could have been more patient to energetic Mousesong and Elmpaw than him?) but also a good father figure, which is prevalent in his close interactions with kits of all ages.
His good heart isn't without his undying willingness to put a smile on every cat he meets. Something is terribly wrong if Rockjaw isn't bursting with a lovable passion that always tends to lighten any mood presented (in Orchidshade's words, "optimistic"). Even when it comes to outsiders like the Tribe, he is always willing to see others perspectives and treat them all with the same humble grin.
Congratulations again to Bandit and Rockjaw!
SHIP OF THE MONTH --
Who is that under the mistletoe? It's Yewthorn and Morningmist of course! Voted as the best parental unit, the pair have won themselves S-OTM! Congratulations to both wish and Annie for such a dynamic duo! Going from she-cat to she-cat, Yewthorn had a reputation for being a player among the ladies (and having kits in two different clans?! Shame on you Yewthorn!) But in the wake of Morningmist's grace, Yewthorn found himself strangely smitten. What could have easily turned into another one night stand is now one of the strongest family units on the island!
Even with the knowledge of Yewthorn's bachelor past, Morningmist has accepted and trusted the tom as her mate. On the opposite side of the coin, Yewthorn gave up a thrilling lifestyle for the beautiful molly. Whether that was meant as a genuine promise or a false hope, it turned out to be true love after all, their dedication to each other spawning more kits (on purpose this time!) And believe it or not, it was Yewthorn's idea?! Will Yewthorn be less of an awkward, clueless father this time around? We think if he focuses less on the “she-cat talk” and more on his fatherly duties for a nervous and overprotective Morningmist, he’ll do fine!
Congrats again to Yewthorn and Morningmist! We can't wait to see how this couple grows as both mates and parents!
RELATIONSHIP OF THE MONTH
They wouldn't kiss under the mistletoe, but we could see them jingling merrily on a sleigh together (as much as Orchidshade would want to die). Voted as the best BFF duo on the islands, Finchstar and Orchidshade, played by rain and maxx , have stolen our hearts with their surprising close affinity for one another (or at least on Finchstar's end).
Starting back when Finchstar first became leader, their bond had formed when the young tom attempted to console Orchidshade when her brother died in her own arms. Or, paws, we should say. Trading consolation for a new addiction to lavender, Finchstar was certain in that moment he could never have a better medicine cat
Now whether Orchidshade feels the same or not? Who’s to say! Even if she doesn't want to acknowledge it, we all know that Orchidshade has a soft spot for the nervous leader, from giving him mental support to concrete advice. This she-cat keeps Finchstar sane and mindful, not to mention healthy. With their close bond not just as council members, but as friends, these two polar opposite buds are a perfect team!
Congratulations to both Orchidshade and Finchstar! May you both sniff lavender together for seasons to come.
THREAD OF THE MONTH
Voted as the best family thread, Oh the Places We Will Go delivers a bittersweet twist on family bonding in this month's T-OTM! While it doesn't exactly follow the merry and jolly theme, the power and emotion in this thread illustrates the deep and complicated love between a family divided by grief. Foreshadowed by the stormy weather, things start out rather innocent and calm despite the warnings. But as soon as Blackbird steps into the scene, the painful heartbreak begins, a sadness every reader can feel.
After the death of Blackbird's brother from a horrific coyote encounter, Talon took the opportunity to take her and the children out for a nice walk. Despite not being mates, Talon tries his hardest to comfort the mother of his kits, complimented by Falcon's own subtle attempts at consultation. But all goes wrong when Blackbird erupts in a full panic attack after Primrose starts to wail, overstimulated and worried about her mother, with Song, Talon, and Falcon as an audience. But, with a little love and patience, Blackbird calmed down under the support of Talon and her children, her confessions of guilt and grief the last echo of her sorrows under the wings of family.
Congratulations to thread members fallenreaper , Raven~ , wolfiedemon , wish and Egotistic for pulling together such a heart wrenching yet beautiful tale of mourning, capturing what it truly means to find comfort in the ones you love.
The themes for Febuary are:
C-OTM: Most changed character
S-OTM: Best “Should have been” Couple
R-OTM: Best new and/or forming relationship (friends or enemies)
T-OTM: Best coming of age thread (where character experiences a moment of substantial growth)
Nominations for January will last until January 15, 2021. Voting will then last from January 16, 2021 to January 31, 2021. Remember to vote with the form listed below.
[b]Member Name:[/b] Name here
[b]Member nomination:[/b] M-OTM nomination here
[b]Character nomination:[/b] C-OTM nomination here
[b]Ship nomination:[/b] S-OTM nomination here
[b]Relationship nomination:[/b] R-OTM nomination here
[b]Thread nomination:[/b] T-OTM nomination here
[b]Notes:[/b] whatever here
BIO CLARIFICATION AND RULES ---
As our member base continues to expand, and we continue to develop the site and our own lore, we’ve noticed a growing concern over how we review bios, what is acceptable or not in a bio, and the connection between bios and the site’s lore. We think it’s unbelievably cool that members want to use our lore to structure their characters, and we encourage it! Please!
However, members should not dictate what other members can use in their bio, or try to use the lore in a significant way (character plot vs. site plot) without consulting staff first. In response to this concern, we have decided to reiterate the current bio rules and add some additions for further clarification.
1. To ensure that bios receive an efficient review from staff, bios will now have a total 2,500 word count maximum. Each section can be whatever length you want as long as it meets the current criteria and falls between 700-2,500 words total. We love that members invest so much into their characters, but we’ve found we can’t do a substantial review with so much text.a. If a bio exceeds the word limit, we will ask the member to reduce/cut the bio before we even review it.2. If you wish to incorporate any of our canon NPC characters or claim that your character was involved in a significant site-wide event, you must gain staff approval before submitting the character bio for approval.
3. Character bios must be written in narrative summary. This means that the history of the character must be written as a summary, chronologically detailing their important life events. You can insert a scene or two or some important dialogue, but the entire bio should not be written without concrete details. Narrative prose or scenes are fun to read, but without concrete details, it is hard for staff to follow without several rereads.
4. We will now not approve a bio until it has sat in the #maintenance-request channel for a minimum of 24 hours and at least two staff members have reviewed it. This will ensure each bio has received a substantial review.
5. If you are concerned about a character bio that has been accepted, contact a staff member directly to further discuss the concern.a. Non-staff members who are found ‘bio policing’ accepted character bios (i.e. dictating what is and is not acceptable in a bio) in the public discord or on the site will receive a warning. Repeated infractions will result in a ban.These rules are effective January 1, 2021. Staff and mods will be enforcing them.
b. Much like the #writing-channel, members are allowed to discuss and plot WIP characters if a member asks for it. Members should not call out other members for their ideas or shoot them down if it is unwarranted. If the bio is finished and contains issues with the lore, clans, etc., staff will contact the member directly to fix it. Again, violations will result in a warning. Repeated violations will result in a ban.
FORBIDDEN ROMANCES ---
We’ve tossed this idea around since the start of the site, and we believe it is now time to introduce some Forbidden Romances rules. To make forbidden romances more realistic, and more fun, members are now required to request an official forbidden romance roll before their characters can meet.
To ensure that couples can still meet, but also face some consequences for their actions, we have tested this system substantially behind the scenes. It seems to work. However, we will continue to adjust the rules if problems arise. For now, we will view this as a trial period and make adjustments over the next few months if needed. The new rules are available in the Forbidden Romance thread, as well as summarized below.
1. The first meeting between a potential forbidden couple does not require a request for a roll. Basically, the first meeting is on the house! Go nuts! Let the sparks fly!
2. Any subsequent meeting requires a request for a forbidden romance roll.a. Members will create a thread in the new Forbidden Romance Request board and fill out the form for the request. Staff will then perform an official roll for the couple.3. Once a couple has been caught three times by either leadership or a clan-mate, it will result in an IC punishment. Depending on the clan, this can result in banishment. The couple must then decide if they want to leave their clans to be with one another or to end the relationship entirely.
b. The couple will receive an official roll for the overall pair. This roll will determine if they meet or not.
c. The second roll will deliver their individual consequences and earned modifiers.
d. If the meeting was a failure, the couple must wait one full OOC week to try and meet again.
The forbidden romances rules will go into effect on January 1, 2021. If you have any questions about the rules, please reach out to a staff member.
INDIVIDUAL TRIBE MAPS ---
rain 's back at it again 👏 👏 👏Obviously, Lichenclan won the poll
it was the only correct choice, so Rain graciously blessed us with the most sacred map on the island. Isn’t it holy? Next up are the dirty heathens across the creekis Thistleclan! 🌲🌲🌲
MONTHLY PATROLS AND PLOT UPDATE
After a season of rain during leaf-fall, the islands have been firmly grasped by the deadening cold of leaf-bare. Although it hasn’t affected the clans or tribe as severely as the last torrential storm, they have recently been hit with their largest blizzard of the season to date. Now the clans cats must wade through the inches of snow that now cover their island home, which has made prey scarce and resources insufficient.
While Cinderface convenes with her starry ancestors at the Moon Cave, the other medicine cat’s of the island gather beside the remains of the lungwort as they discuss their mysterious dreams. Changes are coming to the island, and it becomes more evident each day that life will never return to what it was before the tribe appeared.
The change in season, however, brings invisible enemies to the island once more. Sickness seems to be rising among the Clans, and the symptoms are eerily similar to one seen before.
Check out the January Event thread to learn more about the sickness and roll to see how your characters are affected!
Note: Important and plot related threads are linked in the plot summaries. Please prioritize these when working on posts to keep the site-plot moving forward.
Please also check out the December Patrols as well.
RedwoodClan continues to train to strengthen their standing on their island home. While some hesitate at the thought of war, others grapple the horns head on. Although many warriors continue to speak out against the weakness they see in their leader, others are choosing to show support and encouragement. For those who support the tribe, a recent RWC patrol discovered that the sandbar was destroyed in the recent flood, cutting them off from their friends across the lake (a sight to see).
Note: Please prioritize your RWC training threads, so we can continue with the next battle
- Warriors and apprentices continue to train as they strive to create a stronger and more unified RedwoodClan.
- At the half-moon, Orchidshade and Smallpaw discuss the meaning of their mysterious dreams.
ThistleClan struggles to recover after a flash flood decimates their camp (Either way, You Won't be Going Thirsty). After appointing Stagflight as her new deputy, Thievingstar temporarily settles her Clan at the Great Owl Tree (Glass Half Empty, Glass Half Full), but soon realizes with the change of season that they cannot remain. Striving to keep her clan together and strong, Thievingstar and her new deputy Stagflight work together to find a new, much more suitable home for their clan.
- ThistleClan remains under their curfew, no cat may leave camp between sunset & sunrise, and none may leave camp alone.
- Thievingstar moves the Clan to the Great Owl Tree for shelter, but soon realizes more substantial shelter will be needed to survive leaf-bare.
- Thievingstar gives birth to two kits in secret: Fadingkit and Frostkit.
- Yewthorn and Morningmist are expecting their second litter.Note: Please prioritize the TC vs. LC threads, so we can finish that encounter!
After a failed patrol to investigate the sand bar (Measured out in Miles), and a sacrifice to StarClan (Sacrificial Lamb), Minnowstar and her warriors itch for blood and retribution. An attack is planned on RedwoodClan, but the growing ranks of the rebellion could silently undermine those plans.
- The Rebellion continues to recruit cats in secret.
- Those faithful to Minnowstar report to her concerning conversations or actions regarding the rebellion.
- Briarpaw sneaks behind Cinderface to meet with the other medicine cat’s at the half-moon to discover the meaning of her mysterious dream.Note: Please prioritize the TC vs. LC threads, so we can finish that encounter!
While the Tribe wonders if they can expect more visits from their island neighbors, they soon discover that the previous leaf-fall storm has left the sand bar impassable (Swept away with the tide). The Tribe has prepared as well as they can for the winter months. But with the snow, comes the constant threat of hungry predators, and the resurgence of an invisible enemy they had hoped to never see again.
- The tribe discovers the sandbar has been destroyed
- The Tribe works hard to ensure their survival during this season of leaf-bare.
Due to low activity in December from the holidays and life events, there is no age up for the month of January. Aging will resume in February.
Remember if you have apprentices reaching warrior age check out the requirements and ensure you meet them before putting in a ceremony request.
Note: Kits from the Mouse x Raven litter will remain three moons old.
FUTURE UPDATES ---
We hope everyone is able to enter 2021 feeling hopeful and energized for the future! We all know 2020 was a rough one, from the pandemic to personal reasons. Just know that we are all here for each other, and if needed, the #i-need-a-hug channel exists for those who need to vent or simply a shoulder to lean on. Please remember to take time for yourself and indulge in whatever eases your mind and makes you happy!
Next month, we hope to kick off another themed thread contest, some monthly site maintenance, the Thistleclan individual map, and our usual plot and clan updates. We hope everyone was able to enjoy the holidays! Here’s to a new and better year! Come on 2021!
The Apostles Staff