Redhawk Caldera All black everything.
All Welcome  April 19, 2021, 01:20 PM
Towhee
Redhawk Caldera
Sovereign*
She stole away for a little while this afternoon, taking a walk ahead of what promised to be a decent soaking judging by the blackening horizon. As she meandered around the caldera, she rifled through the same old bags of mental crap she carried everywhere these days. But then she touched on something new to fray at her nerves, the knowledge sawing at her so badly she slowed to a stop and stared off into the distance.

Apart from the day of their son's death, had she really not spent a single moment alone with @Reyes since the birth of their children? No, it had been even longer than that. The last time Towhee could recall being with him was the day he'd returned to the caldera. If that wasn't bad enough, acknowledging this fact made her abruptly aware of the chasm yawning between herself and her mate. Evidently, sharing childcare duties day in and day out did not necessarily nurture a romantic connection.

Towhee laughed humorlessly even as she thought those words. Things had never been put quite right since his exile, had they? She found herself eyeballing that metaphorical canyon and wondering if they could possibly bridge it or shrink it. Did she even want to? She had never been one for relationships, after all. And it wasn't like she blamed him, or hated him, or didn't want his help. Towhee just didn't know if she loved him. Fuck, that was awful.

She stood there so long, the storm swept in and drenched her in a heartbeat. "When it rains," Towhee groused, making no attempt to seek shelter, "it fucking pours."

-Signing.- | "Speaking." | -"Signing & speaking."- | "Mouthing (inaudible)." | Thoughts.
Members of Redhawk Caldera are welcome to power-play Towhee (excepting injury or death) for cohesion and continuity, whether or not she's an active participant in a thread. Just tag me!

April 20, 2021, 04:24 PM
Reyes
Redhawk Caldera
Tradesman
He had gone as far west as the lake, slogging through the shallows for the better part of the morning in search of something. Fish, maybe. Tendrils of plants or flowers he could maybe build in to something of a gift; foolish, romantic notions that were half-baked at best. He didn't find anything and headed back after an hour or so of fruitless hunting; by the afternoon the mud had caked his feet and slicked his already dark coat with more brown shades, mottling the red. Reyes had nothing to show for the effort and wasn't keen on stopping by the hideaway where his girl and their children napped - but he found himself going that way regardless, sort of at an amble.

It just so happened that Reyes crossed by where Towhee was standing in time to hear the tail end of her words. He had not noticed the rain falling; the dampness of the mud had cooled his extremities well enough to numb him to the feeling. However when he stopped and looked towards Towhee now, he saw his breath briefly plume from his lips. He saw the sour look on her face and took a deep breath.

On his approach he made sure to give her ample time to notice him; the dreariness of the day diluted the spring colors substantially, but the rain made the green stand out above all else. The red in his coat turned a dark brown almost like the mud. He sank to his haunches beside her soon enough, booping her shoulder with his chin.
April 20, 2021, 04:38 PM
Towhee
Redhawk Caldera
Sovereign*
All it took was that simple touch for Towhee to immediately renege on every thought which had crossed her mind in the past few minutes. Blinking rainwater out of her eyes, she gave Reyes a searching look before leaning toward him and touching her nose to his cheek. Of course she cared for him, even if she still had to admit it really wasn't a classically romantic connection they shared.

"I miss you," she said baldly to him before abruptly noticing his dishevelment. This was probably what she looked like on any given day, although the pups were getting a little better now at toileting in a designated spot near the Hobbit Hole's doorway. "I know we see each other every day," she continued, "but between the kids and all the other shit..." Well, he probably knew exactly what she meant.

-Signing.- | "Speaking." | -"Signing & speaking."- | "Mouthing (inaudible)." | Thoughts.
Members of Redhawk Caldera are welcome to power-play Towhee (excepting injury or death) for cohesion and continuity, whether or not she's an active participant in a thread. Just tag me!

April 22, 2021, 12:31 PM
Reyes
Redhawk Caldera
Tradesman
She looked. . . relieved. That wasn't what he was expecting. They saw little of one another every day, but it was every day; there was a lot to do with their hungry little ones caught in the middle. When Towhee voiced the same sentiment Reyes smirked. Even if it felt like they were leagues apart because of their different duties, they were of a similar mind.

Not much time for just us. he finished the sentence for her. Next came a small stretch, arching his back and pushing his front legs away from himself until his elbows popped, and he could shake out his shoulders. Rain caught in the finer hairs not marred by mud, not that he would notice. When he settled again it was with an emphatic huff; not that she'd hear it.

Want me to find us a sitter? Whisk you away to do whatever you want. His smirk became more cheeky, his brows raising suggestively for a moment.
April 22, 2021, 12:52 PM
Towhee
Redhawk Caldera
Sovereign*
It was a little difficult to read his lips in the rainfall, though Towhee caught the gist of his offer. They did have several good sitters on standby and a break to spend some time alone with Reyes might be nice. But just thinking about it reminded her of their other "dad's" absence. Phox had missed their birth and now several weeks of their life. Towhee didn't hold it against him, though she was forced to acknowledge that he wasn't a figure in their lives, much less a father figure.

And then there was Niamh and their puppies too, though Towhee caught herself and tried to push these thoughts from her mind before they made her feel even worse. She focused her orange eyes on one of the wolves she did have close at hand. She knew she could vent to him; he was meant to be her confidante, among other things. But she didn't want to spend what precious little time they had together dwelling on things they couldn't help.

Instead, she focused on three of the words she'd picked up clearly: "Whisk you away..." "I'm not usually one for whisking anywhere," Towhee answered, wiping away some rainwater clinging to her jaw, "but a getaway sounds nice. As much as they overwhelm me sometimes, I wouldn't actually wanna leave the kids behind. What if we planned a family trip? Maybe... what if we went to visit your family? They're on the coast, aren't they?" And so was Alyx, for that matter.

-Signing.- | "Speaking." | -"Signing & speaking."- | "Mouthing (inaudible)." | Thoughts.
Members of Redhawk Caldera are welcome to power-play Towhee (excepting injury or death) for cohesion and continuity, whether or not she's an active participant in a thread. Just tag me!

April 22, 2021, 01:10 PM
Reyes
Redhawk Caldera
Tradesman
Thinking he had said the magic words, the way Towhee segued to talk of his family and the coast made him mentally slam on the breaks. Not that he didn't want to see them, mind you 鈥 showing off the little bundles he had made was on the top of his list of things to do someday 鈥 but it wasn't something he had considered until Towhee brought it up. The kids were still so young and the coast was so far. Maybe that was just an excuse though; hadn't Reyes just said he'd do whatever she wanted?

Yeah, they're up there somewhere. A family trip sounded like a lot, thought Reyes. Would they need an escort to try and even the adults versus newborn numbers? Should he go ahead first to make sure they were going in the right direction, or that they were welcome? How young was too young for a multiple-day trip like that? Reyes had gone quiet with all of his thoughts.

The rain continued to pitter-patter around them. While he considered different things in his silence, Reyes failed to notice the soft sounds. It was only a minute or two before he turned to look at Towhee - and make sure she could read him - when he said, What if I did a quick trip there and back, to check in, first? I haven't seen my family in. . . a while, and showing up on their doorstep with their grandkids might be overwhelming. The last thing he wanted was either of his mothers having a heart attack because of it.
April 22, 2021, 01:46 PM
Towhee
Redhawk Caldera
Sovereign*
She went very stiff when Reyes proposed making a trip by himself first. Towhee wanted to shout, "No!" Every cell in her body protested the thought of him leaving right now. What if he ended up like Phox, gone for weeks without a word? The Sovereign wouldn't be totally bereft without him but, all the same, she immediately loathed the idea.

But then, he had a clear destination in mind. And it sounded like he might want to visit his relatives for their own sake, not just because of the pups. Towhee took a steadying breath, willing a calmness she didn't particularly feel. She wanted more time with him, not less, but she didn't want to unilaterally overrule him if he wanted to see his family. Family was of utmost importance to her too.

"The kids won't be old enough for a while yet," Towhee countered, "I just wanted..." She paused, searching for the right words. "I wanted something to look forward to, I guess. But," she continued, orange eyes roving his face searchingly, "do you really want to see your family? The timing isn't great but, really," Towhee finished on a sigh, "when is it ever?"

-Signing.- | "Speaking." | -"Signing & speaking."- | "Mouthing (inaudible)." | Thoughts.
Members of Redhawk Caldera are welcome to power-play Towhee (excepting injury or death) for cohesion and continuity, whether or not she's an active participant in a thread. Just tag me!

April 22, 2021, 03:39 PM
Reyes
Redhawk Caldera
Tradesman
Oh, she hadn't meant right now? He let out a deep sigh of relief. No, I 鈥 not immediately. He tried to clarify, but was speaking at the same time she was, and clammed up when Towhee looked right at him again. She had some misgivings and Reyes understood them, although he wasn't privy to the deeper machinations of her thoughts in the moment. Having something to look forward to in the future was valuable.

We can go when you're ready. When they're ready, he added, looking back at the hollow's entryway. He could hear the children squeaking at one-another, and sometimes the scratching of blunt little toes against the dirt. It seemed like a quiet moment for now.

Being away from his new family for any period of time was the absolute last thing Reyes wanted. I would send a messenger to the coast instead, but, I don't know how my parents might react to news that I'm... I dunno, around. And now a dad. It hadn't really sunken in yet. Despite all the work he was putting in with patrols and hunts, Reyes felt more like an outsider looking in, most days. I haven't seen them since... before Tortuga, I guess.
April 22, 2021, 03:53 PM
Towhee
Redhawk Caldera
Sovereign*
She let out a sigh of relief which would've been quite loud if not for the hiss of rain. Towhee nodded when he told her they could go whenever she and the children were both ready. It would probably be a bit difficult wrangling the kids鈥攕he would never forget losing Alyx while trekking merely one territory away鈥攂ut she liked the thought of her offspring getting to know their extended family on their dad's side. It made her think of how happy Meerkat had been to meet her father and learn more about her lineage.

She thought about offering to send Meerkat with word, though Reyes was probably right. There was some news that just deserved to be delivered firsthand. Besides, the yearling deserved a bit of a break. She'd been wandering the wilds in search of Phox for weeks on and off. Towhee knew Meerkat hated being away from the pups. It would be unkind to send her off on yet another errand.

"I don't think it's a bad idea for you to go on your own first," the Sovereign said. "Maybe you could go when Phox gets his ass back here?" That was assuming he was coming back. Surely he was coming back, right? "Or sends word, at the very least," she murmured, raindrops sliding down her cheekbones like tears.

"We should get out of this," she said in the next moment, gesturing. But she didn't want to head back to the Hobbit Hole just yet. "We could head to the cave?" Towhee said, unsure how she felt about it. Their three dead children were buried there. There was a part of her that had thought she would avoid it for the rest of time. But right now, she realized she needed its comfort and the memories of stealing away with him there for days at a time...

-Signing.- | "Speaking." | -"Signing & speaking."- | "Mouthing (inaudible)." | Thoughts.
Members of Redhawk Caldera are welcome to power-play Towhee (excepting injury or death) for cohesion and continuity, whether or not she's an active participant in a thread. Just tag me!

May 02, 2021, 06:19 PM
Reyes
Redhawk Caldera
Tradesman
Yeah, that would work. Reyes agreed, wondering immediately about Phox and his whereabouts. The young man wasn't worried about visiting his parents nor did he truly want to hasten the event along; but it got him wondering. If Phox returned without Niamh would part of the blame fall on Reyes? If Phox didn't return at all, would Reyes lose Towhee for his involvement?聽

The rain picked up. Towhee mentioned retiring from the inclement weather and drew Reyes from these new worries as they buzzed, growing from annoying larval stages to more prominent black flies that circled inside his head. Remembering their love cave made him smile.聽

I dunno about the cave. Last I checked it, a badger had moved in there. Smelled old, pretty sure it didn't give two shits for the wolf smells we left behind... Then again, a fresh pelt might be a good gift for their kids.
May 03, 2021, 09:23 AM
Towhee
Redhawk Caldera
Sovereign*
She went very stiff when Reyes offhandedly mentioned there was a badger lurking in their cave, where their dead children were buried. Towhee's eyes flashed in the rainy gloom, combing searchingly over Reyes's face for a moment before turning and striding in its direction.

"Then we have a badger to murder," she ground out over her shoulder.

Wanna fade? :)

-Signing.- | "Speaking." | -"Signing & speaking."- | "Mouthing (inaudible)." | Thoughts.
Members of Redhawk Caldera are welcome to power-play Towhee (excepting injury or death) for cohesion and continuity, whether or not she's an active participant in a thread. Just tag me!

May 03, 2021, 04:04 PM
Reyes
Redhawk Caldera
Tradesman
OK!

The look on Towhee's face was brief but sharp, not too far off from the hungry look she used to turn upon him when they visited the cave before. This time it was different; it wasn't as welcoming, and then when she mentioned killing the badger Reyes knew not to push his luck. They could bond over the culling of this invasive old creature, cleansing that sacred space for the sake of their lost ones. He nods as he begins to stride alongside her through the rain, determined to see this through.