Golden Glade Teach and tell me,
#1
Joining 

"I'm not sure what I can offer." Grímnismál was convinced to go with, and possibly find refuge in the group.. Though she held doubts, insecurity what could be given. Knowledge of herbs and poison, but in the end, the reapea was just a yearling. She held what she knew from her mothers teachings, but putting them in practice was another ordeal altogether. 

She looked at Solaire with a slight worry, and a hint of embarassment. Though, she still held onto the dying holly, like a talisman of sorts- that didn't work. They seemed to be surrounded by a fog, and the turrent of rainfall created temporary streams, blocking paths to the destined area. They went completely, off track, or at least the reaper did and lost the pup. She looked at only empty space.

"Curses."
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#2
Following Solaire's scent had not been easy; the rain stripped most clues of her passing away, but Raleska's perseverance paid out eventually as she finally caught scent of Solaire- with a stranger.

Raleska was not naturally aggressive, but she wasn't a softie either; her hackles lifted instinctively as she read the room, trying to figure out if Solaire was in trouble or not. Solaire was conspicuously absent -- all the same she eyed the unusually pied (could that be a word for it?) woman with distrust. "Where is Solaire?" Raleska called out, coming to a smooth halt over a swath of water-logged moss. Her gaze trailed to Grimnismal curiously, unsettled by the unusual hue that lingered in the she-wolf's gaze: red, like an eclipse, a stormy sunrise, or blood along water. "Who are you?"

editing to remove solaire <3
all of which makes me anxious,
at times unbearably so.
#3
A dark storm approached, intimidating Grímnismál so. She tried her best, to remain calm, a stoicism, but could not fully prepare herself from the worry that came with, "Hello miss, I was temporary with Solaire, but we got lost.." she greeted with a rather meek deposition. She realized it may be impolite to speak with a herb, and gently dropped it by her paw, being clearly guarded with it.

"I am Grímnismál."
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#4
Her search for Alyx led her through the surging rivers to the West and back again, hoping perhaps that her child had wandered home after having somehow disappeared into the mist. Niamh's ire toward each and every adult in her pack for not keeping their eyes on her children had not dissipated, and with her fatigue her irritability had grown. Given the fact they'd travelled through a watery bog to get from the Copse to the Glade, they'd left little behind in the way of track, by now, making it damn near impossible to find where Alyx might've gone missing. 

But she was nearing the borders of the Glade again when she noticed a couple tracks leading into the glade that did not belong to the Firebirds.  It was easy enough for strangers to trespass through a well-established pack's territory as it was, what with all the rain, let alone a temporary shelter as well. So she could at least forgive- in the meantime- lone wolves from seeking shelter in the glade despite the fact a pack of wolves had already chosen to settle there. She couldn't help but feel another surge of disappointment that caused her hackles to stiffen; were her packmates even trying to guard their new territory, though? They still had two out of their three children to protect while she was off trying to find the one they'd lost. 

Despite being over-tired already, once she realized that her remaining children might be in danger, she sent up a short but loud summining call- to alert her packmates to potential danger lurking on the borders of the Glade, and picked up a trot to intervene. She didn't stop to consider the scents she was following, only noting that there were two and that she did not immediately recognize them. She bristled as she saw them, ahead- her gaze immediately drawn to the female with crimson eyes, and a brilliantly contrasting pelt that reminded her of the colours of a magpie's wings. Then she cast her gaze to the darker female, who caused Niamh to stop, a hitch in her breath.

"Raleska-?" She barked in surprise, sliding to a stop. She bristled, recalling her last encounter with the girl- who was now a woman. Those two, vile sea-witches had attacked her without hesitation the last time she'd seen Raleska, and she couldn't help but fear that they might be close by still. She recalled their scent- and found it lingered in the air, particularly around Raleska. She cast a wary glance to the stranger,but looked back to Raleska, one ear turned back- listening for any sign of an ambush from Erzulie and Rosalyn, who she assumed wouldn't be too far away. Having them this close was terribly uncomfortable. While she wanted to greet Raleska more warmly...She knew better than to get comfortable, lest she be attacked without warning. She couldn't believe how Raleska had grown- and while she looked tired, worn and toughened by life, Niamh was still relieved to see her again, alive and in one piece. "Why are you here? And who are they? Who else is with you?" She asked, looking past her suspiciously. "The Firebirds have claimed this glade." She said, borrowing hope that some of her packmates might show up to back her up- just in case she ended up being even more outnumbered.
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#5
*supertrolllaugh at cyprin* u did this SPEAK FOR UR CRIMES

Noticing the sheaf of vegetation held in the stranger's mouth, Raleska started as she caught the name. The last thing she would expect anyone ever be named -- the pack she had been born into. "Gri--Grimnismal?" Raleska thickly repeated back, ears pinned to her skull.

Would her mother ever stop haunting her?

She didn't have time to collect her thoughts, for another set of footsteps entered the scene. Raleska whirled on the approacher more sharply than she intended, still reeling from the pied creature's name -- her blazing eyes set accusingly on a tall, impressively scarred amazonian that --

"Niamh?" At first, Raleska had not recognized her -- but it was not joy that ebbed her voice now, but a budding sense of anxiety.

No, this was all wrong. She shouldn't be here. Solaire shouldn't be here. And that --- that wolf -- that wolf with the cursed name of her mother's pack -- hackles were rising uncontrollably down Raleska's back. She was so disjointed, so out of place, she hadn't even noticed they were standing on claimed ground. Oh god -- where had her brain been, was she an idiot?

The Eyjolfur jolted as if struck. Her gaze danced from Grimnismal, to Niamh, back again: Solaire was now the only thing she cared about, but Solaire wasn't here-- she couldn't guarantee Niamh was still a friend, and she didn't know anything about this Grimnismal. "I --" Looking at Niamh she could tell the guardian wanted answers -- but she didn't even know who this wolf was other than -- HAH -- her mom was MOCKING HER -- "Grimnismal."

The introduction fell bitterly from her lips. "I'm sorry, I didn't know -- I was looking for Solaire." Raleska's voice was contrite but her gaze was fixed accusingly on Grimnismal, wondering why they were so far from home and right up some other pack's backside.


editing to remove solaire <3
all of which makes me anxious,
at times unbearably so.
#6
im screaming i mixed up territories 
paying for my sins


There was worry, especially on how the other spoke of her name. Was it that bad? Her origins are nordic, and so was the main language Grimm speaks. Though thankfully the others would properly make their children bilingual for trading purposes to the mainland, and she didn't have trouble knowing their language, "Is something the matter?" 

Though her question would be pushed back, as the reaper turned to face a wolf layered in honey colors, a perfect replica of summer itself. She seemed to know the other, and likewise, they both edged names that Grímnismál assumed for each other. She backed away from the group, stepping away once the badger-like lady gave an accusing glare to her.

"I'll leave?" The bay-wolf didn't even think they entered the wrong territory.
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#7
The way Raleska and Grímnismál looked at each other, it wasn't immediately apparent whether they knew one another or not. There didn't seem to be a lot of familiarity between the two of them, though Raleska did know the crimson-eyed woman's name. Niamh's eyes roved to Grímnismál, then, noting with barely concealed envy the way her half-mask accented the brilliance of her gaze, and how the sloping line of dark fur arcing up along her shoulders where the fur faded to white made her look even more slim. For a wolf who'd twice been made a mother, Niamh missed having the body of a maiden. She noted with a slight raise of one eyebrow that the female was also missing almost all of her tail; she tried not to stare, but without a doubt, her gaze lingered on the female for a few moments. 

But Raleska was her main concern, and her main interest. And she noticed the tension in Raleska's form- likely caused by a conscience that whispered with the voices of the two sea-witches that laid claim to her. She hated knowing that their influence would have precedence over Raleska's own intuition. She realized, though, that she'd approached the duo more or less with guns blazing- a symptom of the strain on her own nerves, caused by the loss of her daughter. She sighed, willing some of her pent-up tension to release itself from its grip on the back of her neck. 

"No, it's alright. It's shit, out there. Relax, for a bit." She said softly, casting a brief glance to Grímnismál, not wanting to anger her lest she secretly be in league with Erzulie and Rosalyn. At least, if she allowed Raleska's companion a few moments to rest, she might be able to finally have a moment with the girl she once knew. She fixed her attention on Raleska for a moment, and her features softened. She took a step forward, and her posture became noticeably more supple, and her tail even deigned to wave gently at her muddy hocks. 

"It's been a long time...I've wanted to ask you so much, about your Mom, and you, and Svalinn," She said, her tone hinting that she would welcome any information about their wellbeing that she had to offer. And then, a memory hit her. "And my brother- he...He would've lived with you, for a while. His name was Ambrose-" She said, and paused, as she suddenly remembered. "But he called himself Firefly. He- he said he was going to be a father." She said. "Is he...Have you seen him? Is he alright?" She knew that Raleska was searching for someone too- someone named Solaire...But Niamh was a selfish creature- and had been waiting for proof of her brother's existence for two years now.
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#8
"Stay." Raleska commanded of Grimnismal,  her gaze held on Niamh. The sylph was not one to often issue orders, but today, her request came with a firmness that could not be revoked: move, and I will be very, very angry with you.

She needed to get to the bottom of why she smelled like Solaire, and where Solaire was -- but Niamh captured the full of her attention now. For the first time, Raleska realized Niamh was different: it wasn't the mud, or the scars, but something else -- something she could not put a name to.

Niamh's relaxed posture did enough to ease Raleska's tension, though she watched Grimnismal like a hawk from the corner of her eye. Niamh didn't know it, but every single wolf she mentioned Raleska considered dead -- to the point when the golden warrior was done talking, it was like someone had taken an axe to Raleska's form and chopped her down into insensate rubble.

First, her mom. "Dead." Raleska conferred flatly, hiding the anguish. Then, her brother -- fuck, she missed him. "Also presumed dead." It was different in she never saw Svalinn's body, but what other reason would he have to just leave her in the lurch? He had to be dead, otherwise it just didn't make sense.

Then, Firefly. Raleska remembered him crushed in the rubble. His body -- Aningan and Rosencrantz and Erzulie hauling him from the ruins. His body crushed. His life stolen. 

This required some tact. Raleska's jaw tensed and she looked to Niamh with unflinching aim -- gone was the soft girl Niamh had once guarded from cougars. Replaced was a girl who had seen more death than good in this world. "He is also dead. I buried him myself." She knew the news would come as a shock, but she could not beat around the bush either. It was either tell Niamh it all, or nothing. "I am sorry, Niamh."
all of which makes me anxious,
at times unbearably so.
#9
Raleska reminded Grímnismál of her mother, "okay." she said, not realizing the slip of her mother-tongue. One urged her to stay with comfort, while the other, like a general of storms, gave a commanding voice for her to remain where she was. She wanted to shrink down, and kinda smolder away from this, as these two clearly knew each other- the reaper felt like an invader to their conversations. Despite them saying/demanding to say, it felt rude.

Felt more on nerve when the golden mother was eyeing her so. Rigid, upright, like a soldier waiting for orders. It felt odd having her attention, as normally the wolf tended to lurk in the shadows of her home isle. Moments like these is where naturally, her tail would curl around her so, but, it was gone.

Though it now seemed the storm chief had her own fair-share of the repears scythe, as the list went on of everyone that have died. Grimm felt pity, as her reddened gaze softened upon Raleska, but assuming she may get a glare back, swiftly moved her sight to the ground, and onto her holly talisman.

.. She wanted to go home.
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#10
The painted lady hung in the background like a fair, Renoir lady in a drab apartment, but disappeared out of Niamh's periphery as Raleska recited with drowned anguish that both Caiaphas and Svalinn were dead. The sway in her tail stopped and her gaze roamed past Raleska and into the drab woodlands beyond, before she fell perfectly still. She anticipated the news before it was spoken, and she remained cast as a stature for a moment or two before she turned, and paced in a silent, imperfect serpentine as she struggled to force her grief into submission. This wasn't the first time she'd lost a brother- and it wasn't even the first time she'd been told that Ambrose, in particular, was dead. But it didn't make it hurt any less. 

Clenching her jaws together, she somberly padded back to where she'd been standing before, her head at level with her shoulders, as though she carried lead in her jaws. Her ears were pinned; she gave Raleska a brief glance before she drew in a breath, did her best to lift her head again, and exhaled slowly. She shook her head. "I'm. Sorry," She said. After all- Raleska too had lost family, both her in mother and her brother. She remained pensive for a moment. There was no doubt, this time; she trusted that having buried Ambrose herself, that Raleska was telling the truth, and that he would not come back to life a second time. "He...Yeah. Fuck." She said, struggling to rein in her grief; but if nothing else, at least now she had answers. 

"His kids, though." She said, and she felt her heart burn. It was almost harder to wonder if his children had survived than it was to hear that Ambrose was gone again. She'd suffered his death once already, and had half-lost him once again when he'd lost his memory of her. "Are they...They'd be a year old, year and a half, now," She said. "Did they...Survive?" She didn't have high hopes- as she believed Caiaphas to be their mother, and in hearing that both Caiaphas and Ambrose were now dead...She didn't have high hopes for any potential nieces or nephews.
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#11
Raleska's diction stayed the pied woman, who uttered something incomprehensible in response. The Eyjolfur's gaze cut to Grimnismal accusingly, half expecting protest -- only to see she was sitting pretty as ever, awkwardly out of the picture.

Good.

Back to Niamh. Raleska wasn't sure what to expect; she had just given a hell of a lot of bad news. Her brow lowered in confusion as Niamh drew a serpentine around them -- no doubt trying to curb her emotions.

That was the thing about emotion; it was quick to flare and quick to be buried -- but make no mistake, it would be back, most likely in the hour Niamh was alone and most vulnerable. Only then, these emotions would have teeth.

Raleska had to think about Firefly, and all of his kids -- had he not acted as donor to her mamans? Younger Raleska thought that was strange; older Raleska thought Firefly was just ready to put his dick into anything warm (steady, Raleska -- who are you?). She chased away the uncharitable thought, recounting what she knew. "He had children with --" Was it wise to tell Niamh now? "Rosalyn and Erzulie."

Raleska was going to leave it at that, but remembered some good that could be told in all this bad. "One of them, my friend, is named Nieve. After you."
all of which makes me anxious,
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#12
With an ominous, high-pitched cackle that lasted all of two, forced clucks, Niamh responded to the news with disturbed confliction. Her teeth were bared in what could've been mistaken for a toothy grin, were it not for the way her eyes narrowed and brows furrowed, darkening her expression the way a a tsunami's shadow might darken the shore before crashing through with devastation. "Rosalyn and -Erzulie-?!" She spat, having never before heard the name of the cinnamon and creame female who haunted Rosalyn's side- but she was quick enough to put the names together and deduce exactly who it was that Raleska was referring to. She lashed her tail and spun about to resume her tread, pacing from side to side as she shook her head, once stopping to gasp and laugh out loud before she turned toward Raleska at the mention of something that sounded very much like her own name. 

"ohhh, fuck," She sighed, and found herself uttering a rivulet of nervous laughter that fell from her lips, which she then licked in an attempt to convince them to relax from their grimace. "Jeez, Ambrose." She said, in disbelief, and shook her head. Of course he'd do that. He'd find the two most vile women in the world, and impregnate them. It was like losing a loved one, and being left the worst possible trinket as an inheritance. "No. There's no way, they fuckin' hate me. There's no way they'd name a kid...Wait- do they know that he was my brother?" She asked. Now this was getting precious- it was shocking to her, but it began to dawn on her that the two hags were likely just as oblivious to their newfound relationship as she had been.
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#13
Laughs, smiles, pacing -- Raleska watched it all with a nervousness flitting across her gaze. Had the shock of learning her brother was dead made Niamh snap? Raleska had always liked the goldspun mercenary, but she was not naive enough to trust her now -- especially with all the manic shifts that rolled up and down Niamh like waves.

Raleska wondered if this was denial in a difference sense. Did she know anything about Rosalyn or Erzulie's choice of names? She shook her head apologetically, wishing she could take a step back without offending Niamh. She remained rooted to the spot despite feeling a growing sense of discomfort. "I don't know. Maybe it came from Firef-- Ambrose..?" Raleska did not want to push Niamh any further off-kilter, so she tried to keep her responses docile (a rare thing, given how inflammatory most of Raleska's comments could be). "I don't know if they knew.. but if they did, I don't think they'd care..? Why do you think they hate you?" Her brow furrowed in confusion; while she remembered that day Niamh had been chased away, it had been out of necessity hadn't it?
all of which makes me anxious,
at times unbearably so.
#14
still skippable!

The reaper clutched the holly tightly between her paws, crushing the already dead-plants even more so. She looked down with a rather grim appearence upon realizing what she done, and could only hold back the sigh. Red eyes momentarily peared at the two, the golden woman seemed to be throwing a bit of a mad momentum, as she laughed and seemingly hissed at the thought of the names.

They seemed like friends, yet they smelled differently. Names were thrown, deaths appeared, it felt too personal. Grímnismál zoned out by focusing her cherry-gaze on the dead plant, waiting for what Raleska wished to do with her.

It seemed she would be stuck in place for a while.. A regret, following the sea-child of earlier.
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#15
So maybe Ambrose had remembered her, after all. It certainly made more sense for the name to have come from him rather than Rosalyn or Erzulie, given the fact thste she was pretty sure they had an attack-on-sight order set on her. They'd had more than one altercation, of course, and both of them had ended with Niamh fleeing the situation- knowing better than to try and hold her own against both of the briney sea witches. She shook her head, inhaling through clenched teeth, though there was something of a strained smile on her features. "Damn, Am-Bro," She hissed softly. Her heart ached, knowing that she would not be able to congratulate him for becoming a father, or involve him in her life the way he'd been meant to be there. She sighed. Nothing could bring him back. And at least he'd managed to do her the favour ot putting a thorn in the Rusalka matriarchs' sides by naming one of their children Nieve. And apparently, Raleska and Nieve were friends...Thank goodness. 

Raleska asked about her relationship to Erzulie and Rosalyn, and she could only assume then, that Raleska had grown fond of them. They'd likely groomed her, harboured her, befriended her. And without Caiaphas around, she assumed they'd likely have been there to console her in the wake of her mother's death, further endearing her to them. And despite how much she hated the two of them, she did not wish to estrange herself from Raleska over old feuds. "It's all old news. A couple a middle-aged women an' me holding grudges over something stupid." She said. Yes, of course, she differentiated herself from the class of middle-aged wolves, because she was too vain to accept the fact that she was getting older. "But. If you want, go on an' tell them I'm willing to let bygones be bygones," She said, with a simple shrug. "I honestly don't give a fuck about it anymore. If they're wiling to cool their jets, considering the fact that we're..." Family? "We share blood, then I am too." Unspoken was the statement that she would want to see her nieces and nephews- but she figured it'd be best to take things one step at a time. 

Still, this whole ordeal was a small source of amusement. That Ambrose's parting prank ended up being a bit of a gift. "Did he have kids with like...Both of them? What's their situation?" She asked, a slightly out-dated way of asking, but she was curious. Part of her wanted to know what few things Ambrose had done in his final months while he'd been alive, so she could at least tell herself he'd lived life to the fullest.
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#16
Raleska had been too young at the time to remember specifics on the matriarch's encounters with Niamh -- though she did recall once, seeing the amazon's gilded back turned away with the Rusalkans giving chase. It had been so long ago -- so long ago.

She felt for Niamh, knowing the woman was now wading difficult waters in navigating grief. She wondered if her own brothers were even alive, and if she would ever be on the other end -- but as far as Raleska knew, they were dead too.

All that was left, was her -- and Rozulie.

Pressed for details Raleska suddenly felt it might not be right to share all of this with Niamh -- even if she was a friend from the past. She wondered how Rosalyn would feel, or the admonishing tone of Erzulie. Doing so made her shift uncomfortably and look at the ground. "Look. I don't.. I don't know if I should say." She didn't know the specifics about that either, and had never asked. "But.. maybe some day you -- or we -- could visit again. I can't speak for them, but we've had a lot worse things on our plate than a feud with you." Like Drageda, for instance.
all of which makes me anxious,
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#17
Niamh was disappointed that Raleska wouldn't offer her more information. She was fond of the sea witches, then- guarding details about their personal lives as though she thought Niamh might do something with it, or that Rosalyn and Erzulie might be disappointed if they found out she'd told their old enemy about their children. She wanted to know more about Ambrose's children- how many there were, what their names were...So she might some day know them should they cross paths. But she couldn't argue with the girl; she was simply making choices that would keep her from becoming an enemy of the two Rusalka women. She accepted the denial of information as gracefully as she could, though she didn't bother to try hiding her disappointment. 

Still- there might be some hope yet, as Raleska suggested they might intentionally meet again- and it softened Niamh's features slightly. She nodded. "I think we should. We live in the copse now, just south-east of the Plateau," She said, gesturing in the direction of her former homeland. With the pack displaced and vulnerable, she did not yet trust disclosing that information to her former packmate. She assumed Raleska would be able to find it, with reference to the land she'd once lived in. "My mate and sister-in-law, if they remember you...They might still consider your mother to be a traitor," she offered, as a warning. "But I'll talk to them." She said. 

She paused for a beat, recalling the day that Caiaphas and her two children had been exiled. She'd offered to keep Svalinn and Raleska with the pack, if Caiaphas had seen fit to leave them somewhere that they would be safe, rather than taking them into the wilderness with her. Niamh couldn't help but wonder what might've become of the life-worn beauty before her, had she been left with the Redhawks.

 "But...I have to go." She gritted, apologetically. "My daughter went missing in the fog," She said, and went on to describe her daughter in detail, so that Raleska might know her if she saw her. "...I have to get back to my search." She said. And while she wished to spend more time with Raleska, she couldn't delay her search any longer. Every minute lost was another minute that Alyx was left unsupervised.
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#18
<3

Disappointment showed readily in Niamh's features -- and how could Raleska expect otherwise?

Once, they had been packmates.

Once, she had saved Svalinn from a cougar, and had looked to Raleska in a godmotherly way -- and now, salt-blooded Raleska withheld information from her.

She did not regret her choice, but she did regret the emotion it inspired in Niamh.

A flicker of something else burned in her at the mention of her mother, but Raleska ignored it. She nodded in response, thinking it would be some time before a reunion was ever made -- certainly, not this fall if the rain kept up.. And winter was no time to travel.

After learning of Niamh's daughter Raleska expressed her condolences, vowing to take up the mantle of searching coast-side for the daughter. "If I find her, I will bring her to you." The Eyjolfur promised, never realizing that little Alyx was apparently playing under her own son's nose as they spoke. "Goodbye, Niamh."

While the parting was bittersweet, Raleska kept all traces of that off of her face as she turned to address the pied medic. First to be asked was what she was doing with Solaire -- and where she had seen Rusalka's daughter last.
all of which makes me anxious,
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#19
...Were they done?

Seemed like they were done.

Though then, Grímnismál's own fate seemed a mystery, as the iron-clad wolf turned toward her with a demanding way, having the reaper swallow her words. She felt a simple mistake wouldn't end too well, "I was with her near some sands by the coast." If remembered correctly, it was near their home, but they were currently laying elsewhere.

"She told me to follow her. I don't have a place to go to, anymore." Her raven-red eyes looked up to Raleska as spun the story, as none of it was lies, she hoped this day would end alright.
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#20
"Thank you, Raleska," Niamh murmured, and wished she could step forward and brush the girl's cheek affectionately- as she might have done when the sombre woman had been a girl, but she feared she might have been overstepping a boundary if she had. Baby steps, she told herself- and perhaps the rift between Rusalka and the Firebirds could mend. For now, this secret meeting between old friends would at least give her the peace of mind knowing that Raleska was alright- and while tragic, she finally had closure for several other, important parts of her life. 

She gave a nod to the other, then, as a polite show of appreciation for allowing Raleska and Niamh speak without interruption, before she turned and disappeared off into the wilderness.
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#21
Similar to Niamh, Raleska quashed the urge to end their goodbye with some sort of physical gesture; but she was not a cub anymore, and worried it might come across as childish or weak.

So instead, she watched solemnly as Niamh left, giving a dip of her head and a wave of her tail in goodbye.

Grimnismal had been plenty polite, listening on the sidelines without interjecting. Raleska surveyed her quietly as if looking at her for the first time, and then accepted her words without any fuss. "Follow me." If Grimnismal was hurting for a home, she might find haven in Rusalka -- as so many had before her.
all of which makes me anxious,
at times unbearably so.
#22
The reaper only awkwardly nodded back, before following Raleska. She didn't think the woman was leading her to a possible home but more thought she was to be interrogated. A wariness presented, but she followed silently.
normal - nordic
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