T'Challa was awe-strucked when he was finally able to see the shifted form of Doctor Anthony Stark; a white panther with an almost silver sheen to its fur that easily came up to his knees when standing on all four and could likely place his front paws onto T'Challa's shoulders without straining or stretching.
"Tony?" He calls out softly even though he knew who it was by their scent, a scent that smelled of oil/grease, and like a fire in the hearth on a cool autumn night. He could even smell a bit of chocolate and roasted marshmallows underneath the others and would always result in him getting a cup of hot chocolate after every meeting he had with Tony.
Tony responds by giving a chuff and swishing his tail, both inviting and a bit challenging to the one entering his territory.
"May i come closer?" The prince asks, wanting to be proper not only with the man he has come to call friend, but also one who was blessed by Bast. When he gets an answering chuff and a slow blink followed, T'Challa makes his way over and sits by Tony's side. "Your form is beautiful. Majestic and powerful." He itched to touch the soft fur but knew not to cross a line. "I don't know why i'm surprised when your human is as well."
Tony's tail gives a happy wiggle and he gently places his paw on T'Challa's leg. Slowly his head follows and T'Challa takes it as an invitation and follows through with his desire to pet the feline.
"Bast has blessed you." His soothing voice softens ever so slightly. "Even in my country it is rare for a panther shifter to be born. And no one with fur so radiant as yours." When Tony thrills in question he continues. "My people are of five true tribes. The border tribe are typically shifters that have protective natures and work in groups well, such as wolves, rhinos, and even crocodiles. They can be dangerous to those who threaten Wakanda and are our first line of defense."
Tony moves away and shifts to his human form, not bothered by his nudity at the moment. "Where they originally the border tribe or were they made to be the border tribe when they united and become what Wakanda is today?"
"A bit of both. They where already mainly on the outskirts of my country due to their nature, but when my ancestor united them, they became a protector of all tribes."
"So you all became their pack." Tony nods in understanding.
"Yes. Now another tribe is the mining tribe. They are your burrow animals, including a burrowing owls, and mongooses. Once again it was both their nature and responding need of our country that called them to mining. Water tribe mainly are hippos and waterbucks. They take care that the water is blessed during the king match, that our water stays pure, and so on. Merchant tribe are your migrating animals like zebras, bats, and wildebeests. They deal with trade within our land and would often go forth into the rest of the world."
"Are they how you got Stark technology?" Tony smirks.
"Yes. Your tech has been fascinating since not only you mainly do it yourself, you do not have access to the same materials we do. Shuri is smart, beyond smart, but she has access to vibranium and other rare material and has many scientist to collaborate with."
"Imagine what we could get up to." Tony already planned to spend much of his upcoming visit working with the princess. They even started on several blueprints, including updating the kimoyo beads they all wore in Wakanda.
"It will surely advance the world further." T'Challa smiles warmly as Tony.
"It will." Tony grins. "Now the last tribe. What are they?"
"The Jabari tribe are the watchers and defense. They are primates and avian shifters. They also help hold onto traditions that can be lost as our civilization advances."
"What tribe do you belong to?"
"I and my family belong to the Panther tribe." Tony snorts at his answer. "Or the Golden tribe. We are a tribe but are not a tribe." T'Challa holds up a hand to halt Tony's question. "While my family has ruled for a long time, others can become king in a match of succession. The Dora Milaje are also a part of it for they leave the family tribe to become royal guards. Their loyalty lies with the king and their family. So if my family lost the throne, we would still be of the Panther tribe but no longer the Golden tribe and would move out of our home. No one has ever truly fought for the crown because only royal blood may fight for the crown and many believe my family to be good leaders."
"I would have to agree with what i know about you and your family." Tony smiles before letting out a yawn.
"Rest. We will be leaving early in the morning." T'Challa makes to get up but Tony stops him. "You and your guards may stay here tonight. There is plenty of room and JARVIS will help guard all of us."
T'Challa smiles warmly. "Thank you, Tony."