Snow Touched

Write stories as told by your kin, either to fill Legendary requirements or just for fun.
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rexcorvus
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Snow Touched

Post by rexcorvus »

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He had not told a story in a very long time; the voice that came out was rough, a little guttural as Fierce Warrior cleared his throat, legs curling beneath him. Beside him, one of his grandsons scuffed a hoof on the ground, making himself comfortable in preparation; there was both a muskwolf and a smaller wolf tucked against his side, snug and safe.

Keep Your Promises had always been the shyest and the quietest of Fierce's children and grandchildren. The withdrawn nature that was not very prevalent in the stronger minded ones meant that Promises had grown up more slowly than the others, less inclined to go out and fend for himself. Instead, he had kept to his father and grandfather's side, and now, fully grown, he still had not fully left. Fierce had told him stories to keep him occupied, to make him feel less left out - and over time it had grown into a simple, quiet tradition, just between the two of them. It relaxed them both, kept them connected, even after all this time.

"Once upon a time," said Fierce, keeping his voice low, "A long time ago, there were the fields.

"The fields were lush and green and filled with many different kinds of flowers of many different kinds of colors. Reds and blues, oranges and yellows and purples. Everything was fresh, the scent filling the air and the lungs of the kin who lived in the field. There was the swamp, of course, not too far away, but the brightness of the field balanced the darkness of the swamp. Together, they worked in harmony in order to keep everything safe and protected.

"One day, however, one of the kin who took refuge in the forests wandered into the fields. She did not know where she was; everything was too much, too intense, too quiet. The intensity of the sun took her by surprise, glaring into her eyes, and she found herself lost, wandering aimlessly until she ran into one of the kin who lived in the field, starved and abandoned. He took pity on her, and brought her to their home; a cave near the edge, where the grass was thinner and the flowers sparser. For several days, he tended to her and when she was well enough to move, he took her back to the forest.

"She did not want to go. She resisted his attempts to push her forward, to go back to the forest, and when he went to leave, she stopped him. She told him that she loved him and did not want to let him go.

"He did not love her back. He had shown her a kindness, and yet she had taken too much of it for herself. But he gave her some white-petaled flowers and told her she would one day find another, one who would be able to give her the love that she so desperately wanted, gentle voiced and soft.

" 'Perhaps in another life,' " he said.

"Distraught and lost, the doe wandered and roamed, restless and lost. Many years passed. The buck grew older on his own, back in the fields, but something in the air kept the doe younger, unable to age, unable to grow. She became a legend, a pale, glowing creature that was only seen during the daytime, making its way along the border of trees. In her wake, she trailed white petals - remnants, the other kin said, of a lost of love. They stayed where they fell, unmoving and unyielding, never rotting away, until there were entire paths of them, snaking this way and that, so bright it was almost blinding. But they never saw the doe, only what she left behind."

Fierce paused, glancing at his grandson. Promises had his head down on his front legs, but his eyes were watchful, intent.

"And in his last days, the buck came to her, knowing she was still there. He found her, even as no one else could, and felt the grief and the love that still lingered.

" 'It's all right,'" he told her, standing before her, so that his head could rest against hers. " 'I could not love you in this life, but I will love you in the next. My time has come. Our time has come. You can let go now.'

"And she did, the petals showering down upon the ground, so thick and clustered together that they blended together, melting and moving. As the buck laid himself down, the doe drew the petals around them both, pure white and bright, covering him as much as her. The petals covered the fields, the swamp, the trees, the land around them, and she lay beside him, her head next to his, and closed her eyes."

Fierce offered his grandson the faintest smile. "As time passed, the petals faded away. But every year, at the time around their deaths, they return, joyful and bright, a reminder of their love."

Promises stirred slightly. "Is this why you named my uncle Petal-Touched?"

Another smile, still faint, but warmer. "Something like it, yes. A reminder of love and loyalty, even when it seems lost."

There was silence for a moment. Promises put his head down.

"Tell me another."


[ wc: 874 ]
word count: 881
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