Redhawk Caldera Enjoy the silence.
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#1
All Welcome 
She woke before dawn, intending to head out on patrol. Instead, she climbed up to the ridge line and sought out a spot on the caldera's easternmost rim to watch the sunrise. Rather than sit and stare, Towhee did a series of stretches to coax looseness and warmth into her cold, stiff muscles. When the sun did begin to peek over the horizon, its welcome warmth spread over her shoulders. She glanced outward and noticed the molten gold glare obscured Blackfeather Woods, which gave her a quietly petty satisfaction.

Come do yoga with me, @Phox.
-Signing.- | "Speaking." | -"Signing & speaking."- | "Mouthing (inaudible)." | Thoughts.
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#2
The move to the caldera had felt like the most natural thing in the world. They had only been back a few days, but already Phox had (re)discovered all his usual haunts. Reacclimatizing had been a cinch, and he was looking forward to many more years here—his birthplace—where he belonged. He had already been up for a few hours when he spotted his sister on the ridge, stretching and watching the sunrise.

She was facing away from him, which meant she probably wouldn't notice his approach, but surely she was used to being startled after all these years of being deaf. Phox sidled up alongside her, noting that she looked toward Blackfeather Woods. It was that place—or rather, the wolves who once lived there—that had split them apart in the first place. Phox swore to himself right then and there that he wouldn't let anything like that happen again.
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Loner

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#3
She noticed her brother's presence but did nothing to acknowledge it, save for a quick nod. Towhee continued stretching until she felt nice and limber, then finally took a seat. She faced eastward, squinting into the rising sun and letting its warm fingers stroke her face. She basked like that for a solid five minutes before finally turning the other direction to look at Phox.

"This is morbid," she said, apropos of nothing, "but I think I plan to die here."
-Signing.- | "Speaking." | -"Signing & speaking."- | "Mouthing (inaudible)." | Thoughts.
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#4
Phox's attention turned toward the Sovereign when she spoke, and he swiveled his ears to listen. Funny, Phox replied with the straightest face he could muster, because I was planning on murdering you here. He was not, in fact, planning to murder Towhee, but she had set it up, so he'd been forced to knock it down. It was the way things were.

Of course, he couldn't keep the straight face for very long, and the corners of his mouth turned upward as he prepared himself for a good ol' smack upside the head. Thinking he might play offense this round, he went to playfully grab at Towhee's neck. He was no mercenary, but he wasn't completely helpless when it came to sparring.
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Loner

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#5
She met his joke with a raised brow and a smirk, though before Toey Towhee could reply verbally, Phox went in for the attack. She wasn't in any way prepared for it, so his muzzle nailed her in the side of the neck, prompting an overly loud choking noise from her. Out of pure reflex, she struck out a paw, unintentionally aiming to whack him right in the pie hole.

"Help!" Towhee crowed simultaneously, her strange voice ringing over the caldera, "I'm being usurped!"
-Signing.- | "Speaking." | -"Signing & speaking."- | "Mouthing (inaudible)." | Thoughts.
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#6
For once in his life, Phox's reflexes kicked in, and he managed to pull his pie hole out of the way right before Towhee's paw was about to smack into it. Maybe he really had learned something after all these years of getting slapped. He nibbled at her neck, though he was quick to release his grip. This would not be a day of murderating.

That's right! Phox declared, I'm murdering you, and I'm gonna make Alyx the new Sovereign. Handing the crown over to their daughter seemed a logical next step. Maybe I'll tell her you died in a tragic accident. But then I've got to think of an alibi. Maybe I could get Figment to say he was with me the whole time. Better yet, I'll pin the whole murder on Figment!
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#7
It was a little difficult to catch his words while being murdered, though after releasing her, he backpedaled and so did she, allowing Towhee to read his lips. Of course, it was all a game, though her orange eyes narrowed more and more with every word.

"You're gonna kill me to death and then not even take the crown for yourself? I don't know if you're lazy or weak. Maybe both. You're leak!" she shouted. It was all very queenly of her. "Specifically an ass leak!"
-Signing.- | "Speaking." | -"Signing & speaking."- | "Mouthing (inaudible)." | Thoughts.
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#8
Ass leak?! he protested, feeling this insult might be one of the best yet. I'll bet Quetzal would love to be called that. That's right, his daughter the ass leak. Phox laughed cheerily, flopping down and enjoying the morning sunshine. He let out a long sigh, feeling the air whoosh out and watching the puff of vapor that hung in the air for a few seconds before it dissipated.

-I'm really glad we're back here,- he said, rolling onto his back and letting his hind legs splay to each side, Gambit-style. Somewhere, deep down, this felt like where they always would have ended up. -Hey, did you talk to Hydra about your baby daddy idea?- Phox asked.
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#9
"I'll unleash it on her later," Towhee vowed solemnly, totally in agreement that Quetzal would not only enjoy it but likely wear the title with pride, "especially since it means she takes after her dear ole dad." She smirked, remaining upright even as Phox tossed himself to the ground and assumed a splayed pose. Evidently he wanted to sun his junk.

He bothered to sign from his new position and Towhee fell into with him, though she decided not to even bother with speech. -No, she brought one of her kids along and it didn't seem appropriate. Besides, the move was a lot more pressing. I'll get around to asking her, though I still think you have a valid point about the randos. I could just run around banging as many strangers as possible,- which wouldn't be too different from the past couple'a years. Her lips parted in a laugh. -Gods, I'm such a slut.-
-Signing.- | "Speaking." | -"Signing & speaking."- | "Mouthing (inaudible)." | Thoughts.
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#10
He had to twist his neck a bit to catch her ptero. So she hadn't been able to nab herself a moon boy just yet, but at least it wasn't off the table. Phox stuck his tongue out in mock disgust when she mentioned banging as many strangers as possible, even though he truly thought it was the best option. It was pretty crazy how different their approaches to family were. Quietly, he wondered why that was. Maybe it had something to do with her, uh, balls. Or was it just one?

Why is it you don't want the dad involved, anyway? he asked, genuinely curious. Obviously, from his perspective, he couldn't exactly have kids without being involved. As far as Phox knew, Towhee had never really had a romantic partner. Not that it was the end-all-be-all. Phox himself had always fallen into relationships without much thought to the matter. Camilla had more or less claimed him, and Niamh had been a friend long before Phox had considered striking up anything (or so he told himself).
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Loner

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#11
He asked a question which sobered her immediately. Towhee couldn't help but feel defensive, it was a knee-jerk reaction. But she didn't respond right away, instead giving it some thought so she could hopefully explain her take to her brother.

-With Niamh, you and me, another parent is just unnecessary,- she stated. -And I don't like the idea of raising my kids with someone I don't know, or even someone I barely know. And the reality is, it's not like I'm going to find someone, fall in love and do it the old-fashioned way. It's just not in the cards.-

She was okay with that part; she didn't need no man. Towhee glanced away for a moment, a ponderous look on her face as she contemplated her own stance. Her orange eyes absently roved the vista, zeroing in on a figure moving along the borders. From here, it was hard to tell if it was @Cinder or @Eljay.

Abruptly, she remembered Phox's suggestion to consider the latter. He did check a lot of boxes, practically speaking, as an insidious voice in her head suddenly decided to insist. She looked away swiftly and didn't mention her glimpse to her brother.
-Signing.- | "Speaking." | -"Signing & speaking."- | "Mouthing (inaudible)." | Thoughts.
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#12
Fair 'nuff, Phox replied. He was glad she had told him, even if he wasn't sure how he felt about her answer. It wasn't like it would change the way he felt about Meerkat (or any of Towhee's future children). And it wasn't as though he was going to dip out of the father role. Spoiler alert: Phox loves being a dad.

Towhee went quiet then, and Phox wondered what she was thinking about. Maybe there was somebody she knew that she did have in mind? Or maybe it was just wishful thinking. As much as he loved being a dad, there was something adorable about the idea of dad-bro-ing it out with somebody. And who better than Towhee's baby daddy? Then again, Phox really didn't like the idea of being "replaced" by another father figure, so maybe it was for the best that Towhee didn't want to partner up with whoever ended up putting their car in her garage.
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Loner

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#13
He didn't press the subject any further. Towhee swallowed, still trying to kick the forbidden images of Eljay out of her mind. Despite her efforts, her inner voice reminded her that he might be the perfect choice, except for the hideous exception: they'd have to sleep together.

Maybe he knows of a way to knock me up without... she caught herself thinking, then shook her head. She knew Eljay was a medical expert, but as far as she was aware, there was no way to conceive without mating. And the idea of doing that with him made her skin crawl.

"I should go patrol," Towhee declared a little abruptly, her voice blunt and loud. Softening a little, she added, "Want to come with?"
-Signing.- | "Speaking." | -"Signing & speaking."- | "Mouthing (inaudible)." | Thoughts.
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#14
The Redhawk's ears fanned back when Towhee declared she was going to go patrol. -Nah, I think I'm going to track down Niamh and see if she wants to go on a little hunting expedition. Nothing outside of the caldera, but we've got plenty of mouths to feed.- Including Towhee's. Wouldn't want her underweight come winter if she was going to attract all the hottest dads in their area code.

-You should see if Fig wants to go. I'll bet he'd like that.- Golly, Phox really was blessed with all the best kids. Which reminded him, he should probably go pay a visit to Bronco, Meerkat, and Fennec to see how things were going at the glen. Maybe he could even convince one of the younger sprogs to come along.
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#15
He declined, though not without suggesting she invite their eldest son. Towhee nodded absently, wondering where Fig was this morning. She wanted to hit the borders stat, so maybe she'd call for him en route and have him meet her there.

"Smell ya later," she said fondly to Phox before loping downhill, the morning sun highlighting the white streaks along her shoulders.
-Signing.- | "Speaking." | -"Signing & speaking."- | "Mouthing (inaudible)." | Thoughts.
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