Redtail Rise the colloquy of monos and una
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#1
All Welcome 
it's time.

she finishes burying a fresh-killed hare in one of their many caches, intending it for Redd (but not begrudging anyone who needed the meat). first, though, she has business to attend to.

trotting toward the rendezvous, Avicus thinks of her recent conversation with @Masquerade. leadership, duty. she knows that one day, her children will step up. but while she is alive, and well, and whole, it must be her.

this land is theirs—but in the most selfish recesses of her heart, it is hers alone.

once near their shared sleeping space, she howls for the pair of leaders: one seasoned, one young. they have done admirably, but it is well past time to take back her rightful place.

and it won't be a discussion. she is Wealda.

for @Augur and @Lilia; other tags for reference (unless you want to cameo!)
but see, amid the mimic rout,
a crawling shape intrude —
a blood-red thing that writhes from out
the scenic solitude
Redtail Rise
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the great huntlead attended red woman as he had always done.

his yellow eyes were curious. but the stance of his body, the offering of tongue to chin, these things would say you have always been leader.

augur was content as he was. 

but would wolverine share this contentment?
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Lilia did not view Avicus with the same reverence as she had for most of her life; and after the woman had returned, withdrawn and reticent, Lilia had let her be. After all, whatever ordeals she had suffered while she had been away weren't likely for her ears, anyway. 

Nevertheless, she'd noticed that Avicus had begun to be more active, more present and she was glad that she seemed to be feeling better. But even when she watched Augur do as much, she did not bow to touch her chin or move to acknowledge any semblance of the rank Avicus had once had. She greeted the woman with the same, deft fondness she would use for any who were welcomed within their hearth- but saved the acknowledgement of rank for Augur, and Augur only. 

Still, she couldn't help but wonder what it was Avicus had called them for, and flicked her ears forward eagerly.
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Avicus had rarely pulled rank in her time upon the Rise. she hadn't needed to. they knew her as master of the place, even if it took a little while to sink in.

undoubtedly, her standing here had been marred by her absence and subsequent sulking.

but to this extent?

she welcomes Augur's ministrations with a pleased mien before turning to Lilia, expecting the same.

it does not come. only Augur is greeted as leader.

a subterranean growl simmers in her throat, and she steps forward, chest-to-chest with Lilia, and lifts her crown and muzzle skyward, well clear of the girl's. indigo gaze cuts down toward the young Berserkr, demanding obedience.

i will leadh again, now, she says, addressing them both but still not relinquishing her stare. i am Wealda.

it's not a request. it's not a question.

and she will not be treated in this manner by some upstart girl not even of her blood. no matter how fond she has always been of Lilia.
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skipping as prompted by Ebony <3

Lilia kept one ear turned toward Augur, attentive to him in her peripheral vision as well, knowing that the Ulfhedinn could instantaneously become the swing vote- a pendulum that could swoop in turn the tables. She was keen to read him but as those stunning indigo eyes locked with hers, she knew she could not look away without offering unbidden deference. Her form grew as she bristled and flaunted her tail above her back to mirror the woman who challenged for the rank. She could almost feel the pulsing of blood in the veins that Avicus exposed while lifting her head so loftily. 

One impulse told her to grab it, and punish Avicus for her impunity. 

But she remembered that this woman was a mother, and Lilia loved her children too much to feed in to such an intrusive thought without even giving conversation a chance. She considered how she would have reacted to absolutely anyone else making such a claim, and knew that she would have lunged in an instant. Avicus had taken her in as a starving child, and she'd owed a debt. 

She'd paid that debt- and now, she felt they were even. 

"No, yuh not." She stated. Shoving her muzzle higher in the air would only expose her own throat and make her look ridiculous. She knew she might only edge in so many words before a fight started- so she remained ready to defend herself should Avicus snap at any moment. "Yuh a mother to motht of the kidth in thith pack, but that doethn't make you Wealda." She said. "Yuh failed uth too many timeth. The pack needth a thtrong, reliable leaduh who doethn't thtep down, or dip out. That ain't been you." She stated in a quiet, but firm voice. 

"Augur an' I been holdin' thingth togethuh fine. We'uh leavin' in the Thpring, Anthuhlin an' I. At that point- do whatevuh you want but until then," She said, with a minute shake of her head. "Yuh not Wealda."
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also skipping per eb!

Avicus cannot not believe what she is hearing.

rather than the obedience she expected—demanded—Lilia shot back with insults to her leadership, her claim to this place.

and Augur stands beside her. is he complicit?

oh, Avicus could respond with tales of the blood she's spilled for this land. of the life she had left behind for it, as Princess of Ursus. of the rage and fear she'd felt when the bear had mauled her, and then the spirits had taken her away.

of those she's lost. of those she has gained.

of the home she has founded, which granted Lilia the path from helpless orphan destined for an early grave to what she is today.

then again, she could just kill the girl where she stood.

but Avicus barely moves, other than increasing the growl tenfold, the fur along her spine and nape lifting as if taken by the wind.

you'll leave now, she says, voice pitched low. nothing more, nothing less.

if she's created an enemy in this moment, then may Merrick's mad gods damn her for the rest of her days—but she will not stand for such impunity.
but see, amid the mimic rout,
a crawling shape intrude —
a blood-red thing that writhes from out
the scenic solitude
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”No. We’uh thtayin’ through the wintuh, it'th already been dethided.” She said, tilting her head to the side slightly, indicating the Ulfhedinn who had accepted and had given his blessing. 

The swell of Avicus’ growl speaks of some amount of restraint- but of growing frustration too. 


”Thith pack followth thtrength; an’ that’th been me, Augur, New Thnow, Anthuhlin an’ Mathque. Yuh not it, Avicuth.” She said. Aside from being bold enough to flaunt an inappropriate posture at the Berserkr Avicus had little else to her name now save for the amount of children who shared her surname. But that wasn’t enough. 

”My advithe ith take the wintuh ath time to bond an’ train the kidth; but thtand down, now, an’ keep yuh dignity tho that when you come to claim it in the Thpring, you might have actually earned it.” The pack’s ways had been set so that the pack followed the strong- and she didn’t believe Avicus was capable of that yet. Not when it meant being able to withstand deaths, departures, and bearing children without showing signs of weakness, and running away.
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a younger Avicus wouldn't have hesitated to rip the girl's throat out. let her legacy be damned, all for the sake of immediate vengeance and the taste of hot blood in her mouth.

she'd created a monster in her own image, though—a monster tempered by forces less volatile than Merrick and Astara.

Lilia must relent, go, or die.

she rears up and aims to seize the bridge of that dark muzzle in her teeth, to clamp down just hard enough to be effective, to shut her up.

thunder's roaring in her ears; her heartbeat hammers like a war-drum. Lilia's challenge has at least one benefit—it stokes the fire within her, dampened for so long by the apathy and entropy of recent months.

she feels like herself again.

and what of Augur? she flicks her auburn tail in her direction—take a side! her side, if he wanted himself and his family to remain in power—or here at all.

oh, her father's laughter rattles against the walls of her skull—
but see, amid the mimic rout,
a crawling shape intrude —
a blood-red thing that writhes from out
the scenic solitude
Redtail Rise
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a loud, harsh bark was augur's contribution. when red woman came for wolverine, against instinct, he thrust himself forward. not to block, not to attack, but to crowd, crowd against them both with waving tail and low, crooning growls.

peace.

wolverine had earned her place, over and over. red woman was wealda. 

but augur wished an end to this tension. wolverine had no children of her own and thus no blood standing. red woman had been absent from leadership enough for the hierarchy to have shifted, for the scents on the border to no longer proclaim her as ruler here.

it was the purview of adult leaders to chase out younger wolves. but wolverine was not an upstart child, she was active in leadership.

for red woman to not have formally returned yet assert herself as dominant female confused augur, stressed him. he recognized her as rise mother but he was not responsive to her teeth turned upon wolverine, whom he also recognized as leadership.

whines, licks proffered; augur pressed himself against whatever flanks, shoulders, sides presented themselves, eyes slitted and body watchful. by not standing with wolverine he invited her scorn. by not standing with red woman he invited her anger.
augur, perhaps for the first time, did not know what to do.
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She knew it was coming- and invited it, ready to welcome a battle with Avicus that would settle things once and for all. She knew she had the advantage of both health, and constant training, and she stepped back deftly to avoid the crushing snap of jaws aimed for her face. When her own jaws clacked together, a grin was left there for one moment as she readied herself to plunge toward Avicus-

-only to find Augur in the way, beseeching both of them. Her ears flicked back in surprise to see such an unexpected indecision within him. She would have expected for him to turn toward whoever it was who needed to step down. It was clear that the wolf who challenged for Wealda could not co-exist with the current Berskerkr, not after this. But the Ulfhedinn, in the middle, warred with the decision. 

She wanted the fight, but at the same time, the fact that he didn't choose Avicus' side, or stand by to allow the fight to go on was enough of an indication that he recognized her authority. He saw that resorting to a fight was simply a show of power, and he didn't seem willing to let that happen. Surely, she thought, he wouldn't have approved of how Wealda had handled things over the past year. 

She could earn Wealda again, sure- but fighting wasn't the way for her to do it. 

"Thtand down, Avicuth." She stated again. "I'm the Bertherkuh, fighting ith what I do. An' if you weren't the mother of the children that I love, I'd have ripped yuh throat out the moment yuh bared it to me." She growled as a warning. "Yuh not a leaduh, yuh a wolf who maketh bad choitheth, ovuh and ovuh again an' thtill feelth entitled to a role she conthtantly failth at. You thtepped down cauthe at leatht at one point, you realithed you weren't cut out fuh it. If you want Redtail Rithe to keep it'th reputation, then thith pack detherveth bettuh than you."
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teeth clack together painfully as Lilia ducks her attempt to grasp on, and before she can launch a counteroffensive, Augur is between the two of them, pleading, touching—

and the girl continues to run her mouth.

and Avicus lets her, despite every muscle in her body straining, aching to rend her limb from limb.

she respects Augur too much to spill blood of one he loves—and respects, thoug she's loath to admit it— beneath his paws.

you would be noh'hing wi'ouh' me, wi'ouh whahh' i've builhh' here, Avicus says instead, burning gaze boring into Lilia's skull. i foundh 'hhis pack. i have kephh' ihh' from harm. i have provided landh, foodh, warriorhh'.

her tattered tongue cleans the angry spittle from her jowls.

'hhe bear came for me, an' oh'herhh' 'hhook me away. buhh' i came back. i have alwayhh' come back. i live here; i will die here.

her stare shifts to Augur, now, and softens, though more with betrayal than any kind of easing of tensions. et tu, brute?

if you are nohh' for me, you are againhh' me, Avicus informs him gravely. you were here ahh' 'hhe beginning. you know me. i am your Wealda.

the anger in her gut was churning into something heavier, more sickly. she felt suddenly nauseous, awash in this great upheaval.

she had no inkling of how far she'd fallen from grace.

or is it only in Lilia's mind?

she should have killed the girl as a whelp, she decides—but the Rubicon has since been crossed. the Berserkr has grown far too powerful.

Lilia must relent or die.
but see, amid the mimic rout,
a crawling shape intrude —
a blood-red thing that writhes from out
the scenic solitude
Redtail Rise
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an ultimatum. 

augur understood very little but this he did comprehend: that red woman had returned to purge their ranks of the disloyal, and that the expression in her face suggested she already considered him in this category.

he was wounded, as much perhaps as a feral wolf might be. were she anyone else, he would never have allowed her to approach it wolverine. but she was red woman, and her might had created the rise.

he had preserved her place as wealda and kept her children from harm, filled the bellies of the hunters so that they in turn might protect the rise. her first litter might very well be his own. 

now his yellow eyes turned hard. augur did not challenge red woman. his tail had fallen and he was quite still, unmoving.

the broad muzzle tested the air with a quick swipe of tongue. it tasted harsh and metallic. wolverine and skin tooth would be gone in spring with no cubs to challenge red woman. but it was not enough. and perhaps as a man he did not understand this particular piece of the hierarchy.

his nose twitched. if he left, his family would too depart. moon runner had dispersed for now. but flame stalker was old enough to choose for herself.

augur was a statue. he did not wish to leave redtail rise. it was his home, that of his mate. four children had been born to him here. was he to lose it for not driving out a fellow leader?

a whine, incredulous.
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It was when the red woman's eyes fell to Augur, and looked at him as less of a man, that she found herself simmering with anger. She moved, then, to his side because in Augur, she saw the strength which had held the pack together through all of it. He had known what was right when Avicus had tried to declare her own son as Berserkr. He had weathered the role of leader when she had stepped down, and had welcomed her abandoned children to be raised alongside his own. 

He had been there from the beginning. He had been there when they had gone on a wild manhunt, and he had been there to raise two litters of children. He had seen Prophet and Ashlar- his contemporaries- leave the pack, and he had seen the children grow and learn. He'd watched Avicus and her children disappear with little or no explanation. He had indeed been there for all of it- and that didn't just make him a powerful ally- that made him a powerful leader.

It was madness to give him the notion that this was not his home.

She brushed her nose to his cheek. She got the sense he'd distanced himself, but she knew that she'd meant what she had said when she and Ancelin had informed him that they would be leaving. So long as Augur had a part in leading the Rise, they would always be allies. She realized now something that she likely should have recognized some time ago- that even if all others had failed, that Augur would hold them together. An excellent hunt-leader, but a leader of wolves as well.

"You can live he-uh, an' die he-uh, but no mattuh how many timeth you thay it, you are not our Wealda." Lilia said. She grazed her nose against Augur's jawline, tail finally relaxing enough to flutter behind her in a show of good faith, before she looked back toward Avicus. 

"He ith."
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her chest feels as if it will cave in when Augur remains indecisive, and Lilia takes his side.

yes she ought to have killed the girl when she had the chance—

he is.

she blinks, and the clouds clear. of course. Lilia won't be here much longer; this is not her place to hold fast, keep glued together.

Avicus will live here and die here. this is her legacy. Augur's legacy.

and the rifts have grown so deep that only this titan of a man can straddle the distance of them, bring the wolves of Redtail Rise to some semblance of heel.

he ihh', Avicus agrees, her mouth suddenly dry. her eyes fall upon Augur's ivory muzzle, and she bows her head, gaze heavy-lidded. you are Wealda.

for now.

but Avicus doesn't lack a sense of self-preservation. how else has she conquered sure death and destruction, so many times?

will you have me ahh' your Ulfhedinn, Wealda? she asks. i have noh'hing 'hho prove buhh' your faihh' in me. my 'hhildrenhh' faith in me.

she resists the urge to cast a jaundiced eye upon her would-be foster daughter, keeping her attention solely for Augur. she will have no more words for the insolent brat.
but see, amid the mimic rout,
a crawling shape intrude —
a blood-red thing that writhes from out
the scenic solitude
Redtail Rise
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wolverine proclaimed it. red woman gave him wealda and augur refused it with a grunt. that rank, in his mind, was reserved for an alpha female. her. she had made him huntlead. he had not demanded it. augur was not so ambitious as to believe taking the role would end their clash.

and he did not like how it had been given. augur was an animal but he saw now that red woman positioned him to lose either way. if he accepted her elevation, he felt expected to elevate. if he did not, he might face more ire. she was a lower ranked wolf who had threatened leadership; by all rights she should be punished and demoted.

but she was red woman. his leader. his submission and loyalty had belonged to her for a long while. she was more than her rank; she was synonymous with the rise in his mind. and she knew this.

he did not answer.

having two in leadership who did not align would lead to further conflict. refusing red woman would cause another sharp schism in their ranks. augur glanced to wolverine now, thankful for her support but with open conflict on his face.

he did not like this. he did not like to see red woman reduced and he did not like how he was placed between them.

at last he lowered his wide head to snuffle at scents upon the ground, namely those of red woman's children, and his eyes found wolverine once more.

she was berserkr only if she had the pack's loyalty. she and he were both outnumbered by rise-blooded wolves, who augur felt sure would turn for red woman, save skin tooth.

in his wisdom, he wished for wolverine to come herself to the conclusion that it was best if she and her mate left now. she would only clash with red woman going forward, whether or not they shared leadership. and then when red woman's children had their own, wolverine would be displaced. should the fight-leader seek to discipline red woman, augur did not see how the fierce warrior would accept that. even the young wolves' decision to leave in the spring implied a winter of discontent.

suppose he had not been present? it would have come to wounding.

to summon the pack would not go well for wolverine, he felt, as the pack was mostly red woman's children. there was no fairness in blood ties. had not she tried to elevate sun jaw over his own ranking of wolverine? had not thorn caller wished for redtail blood in the leadership? red woman wished to be gone and then return to claim what was her own, without obstacle. augur had seen her upon the hunt and in battle; wolverine was not a match against the entire lineage of the rise.

he studied the former wealda as instinct churned through his form.

red woman was redtail. the rise was hers. there was no divorcement of that in his mind even as he remained still and contemplative. wolverine must accept this if she meant to stay. to accept meant capitulation to red woman's command. he did not think wolverine would do it.

the berserkr had submitted to red woman as a child. red woman had never once submitted to wolverine.

augur did not believe now that they could reconcile. to give them equal portions of leadership would demand cooperation and communication, constant contact and shared investment in their wolves.

he did not think this was what red woman wished. she wanted wealda and in his mind she was. but he was no mindless set of jaws to be set on whoever she demanded. wolverine had been here. red woman had not. red woman was mother to many who would stand for her. wolverine was not. red woman was his leader. wolverine was his co-lead.

it would be ongoing conflict not to give red woman a rank and also to restore hers at all. once wealda she would surely seek revenge on wolverine for this resistance. and if it was not given to her, her blood running strongly through the land would torment the berserkr, simply because she was not. 

but neither would he tell wolverine these things. she stood with him, loyal to the rise, ferocious in battle and the hunt. she was skilled and efficient. why red woman saw only an opponent and not an ally, he was not sure. 

there was only forcible bending to come.

there was only one woman which augur heeded over red woman, and it was @New Snow, for whom he called now.

his mate too was fiercely loyal, and she had mothered wolverine in her youth. he trusted her to be objective and to help him make a choice that largely had no good options.
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It seemed that Avicus would agree to defer to Augur which came as welcome news- but to ask to become Ulfhedinn made Lilia snort. She bared her teeth and growled, shaking her head. She scoffed at the woman's expectations. She glanced toward Augur, who had been caught in the middle of the confrontation, now placed between an even harder place, and an even harder stone. She wondered if he understand that in begging for some shred of leadership, Avicus was merely levying him now so that she might wriggle her way into position some day in the future. 

"No." Lilia stated bluntly, regardless of the fact that Augur had summoned New Snow to come and share her opinion. This way, Augur would know how she felt on the matter, and she felt it was important for him to know how she felt. "Nobody talkth to leaduhship that way, lungeth for them, an' then get'th a nithe little promotion out of it. Dun mattuh who you are or who you were." She said. 

She looked deeply into Augur's eyes, and felt a flicker of sadness and remorse. They had built something, together and she knew that things were changing. They had raised children, fought intruders, kept all the wolves fed and happy in Avicus' absence. They had known a time of peace and joy, of growth and progress. They had had a functional, cooperative pack. The Redtail empire had crumbled, time and time again trying to establish itself only to topple beneath the weight of its own ambitions. And here it was again- a figurehead seeking to put herself and her blood ahead of those who had spilled their own for the safety and wellbeing of the pack. 

She did consider leaving- grabbing Ancelin and departing, never to return- and she knew that whatever peace ties she had originally hoped to have with Augur and the Rise would be shattered. It broke her heart to think that she might possibly lose that connection with him, should Avicus go unchecked. 

To Augur, she nodded. "If you won't be Wealda, I would nominate New Thnow." She added softly. She would defer without argument to the quiet woman, who might also bring forth an era of peace. "I'll train a new Bertherkuh to take my plathe in the Thpring. The Rithe will be whole, an' have the Bearclaw family ath an ally." 

Peace. But only if it would be accepted.
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the series of events grow more and more absurd.

New Snow, the arbiter? then Lilia speaks up again—would this girl not shut up, already?!and shoots down her question to Augur.

and has the temerity to say she will name the next successor?!

she gives the Berserkr a wretched stare, then spares no more thought for her, and turns to Augur again.

if you muhh' rely on oh'herhh' 'hho make a 'hhoihhe', your 'hhoihhe' on me ihh' already made, she says, scowling. i will nohh' remain an' be in'hhulh'hed by dhihh' girl on my own land.

with a stiff spine, she turns and departs—though careful to remain canny, should there come any blows from behind.

time to summon her children. they'll have their choice.

she has already made hers.
but see, amid the mimic rout,
a crawling shape intrude —
a blood-red thing that writhes from out
the scenic solitude
Redtail Rise
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New Snow came too late it seemed, mouth bloodred from a fresh kill. She had been showing a remaining daughter how best to flush out rabbits from a warren—many successes, and several failures. One such success dangled from her jaws. Red Woman was quitting the scene, and New Snow chuffed her greeting with a pleasant mien. The offering, though, was for her summoner.

She sensed his distress and dropped it swiftly, rushing to him with attentive snuffles. No harm to him, not physically—to her daughter does she look next, but no harm to her either. 

Wolverine does look a little ruffled, and it is now her own distress is gone that she notes any tension. New Snow emits a grumble, not knowing yet that Red Woman had been its source—only betting that she departed to find it. Red Woman had always been on their side, and they hers. New Snow saw her as family, too, and so placed no blame anywhere. 

She looked and watched Mountain Boulder now, emitting another whine. The rabbit could wait.
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cameo post just to get some thoughts out (:

From afar Carrion watched the scene unravel, unsure of what had compelled her here in the first place. She had not been summoned, she had next to nothing to do with this whole debacle, but nosiness curiosity held her there.

Though her features remained impassive, her mind whorled in a blur of color and sensation, thought and uncertainty. She felt an aversion to the blooming conflict and knew that she should care more for one side over the other. Lilia was more of a mother to her than Avicus had been - yet there was a natal predisposition towards the blood of her true mother buried deep inside. She wanted to see neither of them harmed, she thought.

And still, Carrion could not bring herself to care for either in the way that they would need.

Her support felt like water slipping through cupped hands; she could not hold a torch for Avicus or Lilia. The red queen had been largely absent in her young life, which was more or less a neutral point for the solitary-leaning girl, and Lilia had also recently scorned her by admitting that she would not stay on the rise - she would cater to the oddling no more.

Ultimately though, Carrion came to the recognize in those moments that she only cared for herself. She held no attachments above this self-pedestal, and she realized that it did not matter to her who was in charge or who stood over who. It only mattered which side would better serve her. The ever-present beserkr or the returning queen? It did not help that Augur seemed indecisive as well. Perhaps she could rely on Masquerade's opinion then.

She watched her mother stalk away before doing the same, slinking back in the direction she had come, feeling emptied out of all emotion except wretched irresolution.

Curiosity, again, had stricken the cat.
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augur had always been a deliberator while red woman was action.

it was why she had been wealda and he ulfhedinn.

and it was why she turned away from him now after a swift deescalation of her respect in his authority.

had he the ability, he might have wondered if red woman ever respected his own. 

augur remained still as the boulder for which his mate had named him, watching her depart in ire.

but a beast in soul and body, he turned only with a rumble for wolverine and a relieved greeting for his mate. he tasted the blood upon her mouth, inhaled the places she had gone to hunt with their child; he was wound and soothed by the normalcy of new snow, how she soothed the hurt red woman left behind.

she is angry.

his voice was entish as red wrath gathered in the cold sky, an ancient murmuring that vibrated through his mate's hackles.

she does not trust me.

a belief. she who had borne faith in him before no longer did.

her throated wrath was in the heavens, summoning blood.

augur set his yellow eyes upon wolverine.

go to your mate, an urging said in affection.

they must find one another.

the factions of redtail were gathering.
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#21
Lilia weathered the venomous words as she waited alongside Augur, feeling more and more confident that the Rise was crumbling from within. Lilia had never questioned Avicus' sanity- not even when she had travelled miles and miles to go and hunt down some stranger who had once slighted them. In retrospect...It fit. There had been warning signs all along, red flags that she had ignored over and over again. She'd once admired that ferocity, and wished to be the same herself- but now, she saw it as madness that leaked when logic probed at it.

Her voice rose, summoning her children to her. Lilia heaved a sigh and looked to Augur and New Snow. She could feel the tension ease with her presence, and she too moved to greet the woman with something of a mild apology in her manners. What would happen next wasn't something Lilia could anticipate, but she knew that she couldn't run from it. 

Avicus called out to gather her children- but they knew several parental figures, and Lilia had to wonder if that might play against her. No doubt they would crawl to her like shadows running toward the horizon, but whether or not they feared or fed from her madness was yet to be seen. 

She moved to Augur to embrace both him and New Snow before doing as he requested. She squeezed her eyes tightly closed as she breathed in their scents- knowing that she might lose them in a heartbeat if the Redtails prevailed in expelling her from the pack. She felt her heart shudder and a tightness rise in her throat. 

She'd lost her parents before...She'd lost Prophet, and she'd once mourned the absence of the woman who had given her a home. Now, she might lose Augur and New Snow too- but she couldn't lose hope yet. 

"Thank you," She murmured softly, to both of them. No matter what the outcome was, she was grateful for them, and for everything they had done for her. She could only hope that she would not lose them, too. 

She turned, and headed for her mate, hoping she would find him before the others found her.
Redtail Rise
Ulfr
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#22
New Snow heard him in the language of the old way; any wolf with ears could, if they cared to listen and return to their own roots. She shivered against his words, eyes wide as she saw and felt his hurt. Disappointment toward Red Woman, sister, for this. Her gaze turned toward Wolverine, moving to nudge her daughter. It was not goodbye, not from her. No matter the outcome, her love for the girl was everlasting.

Now to Mountain Boulder did her gaze return. The fractured trust was something she knew no wolf could peacefully live with, and the soul-wound inflicted upon Mountain Boulder was deep. Was her trust so fickle? New Snow could not believe it.

She rumbled to him, she loves you, this her own belief. Soothing, with the truth as she knew it. Red Woman had never before shown otherwise. 

What happened? she asked in a breathy, whistling whine. Then she heard the call of Red Woman—summoning blood. 

New Snow grimaced. And then could understand the reason behind the tension. Breeding season approached, and perhaps she had been challenged. But Wolverine, she was leaving! 

None of it mattered. New Snow had her unbreakable foundation before her. She moved to press her nose against his own. New Snow upon Mountain Boulder. I go with you, she grumble-growled as she tilted up her muzzle to mouth at his ear.
Redtail Rise
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#23
wolverine left them, her scent lingering on their coats.

augur let out a long, bone-deep sigh. his time in leadership had come to an end; he would support his wealda as her subordinate. trust broken between them meant no cohesion.

i will suggest a new hunt leader, he rumbled.

from among her blood.

we will wait for moon runner.

augur was in the middle ages of his life, a time where he would have liked to rest and welcome grandchildren in another year. now he faced upheaval. if he had lost her respect, then he did not think that of her children would continue.

the rise belonged to redtail blood. this had not mattered so much before, but it was stark now, a delineation drawn.

perhaps now the man would focus solely upon his family and seeing the youngest rise pups into good hunters.

thereafter, he did not know.

augur sought new snow's cheek with a loving rumble.
Redtail Rise
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#24
New Snow had seen no difference between themselves and the wolves of the Rise. Were they not all one? She had built her family here, the same as Red Woman.

New Snow upon the Rise. Mountain Boulder of the Rise. He had brought her here. He too has reared his cubs here. 

And their cubs and those of Red Woman had each grown up here. New Snow mouthed at her mates jaw. This was their land, too—it would not be the first time Wealda left. It mattered only what he thought of it all.

New Snow loved Red Woman as a sister and Wolverine as a daughter. But she wondered with all of the young growing to adulthood if it was now their own time to disperse. She did not have the wish to be Wealda herself; she was meant to follow, not lead. 

But between sister and daughter, New Snow was torn. Again she noses Mountain Boulder. She lets out a series of low whiffs and growls. I want to howl at the moon. I want to chase our prey. I want to have more children with you, and continue to raise the ones that remain, young, adopted cubs among that… if needed. 

Though maybe they had been outgrown.
Redtail Rise
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#25
winter was soon to come. it could be tasted upon the wind and in the touch of every stream, felt in the keen of evening air and the morning frost.

the pack had been in a state of flux since red woman had stepped down. augur might have regretted not placing new snow in the position if he could reflect in such detail.

but would that have changed red woman's demeanour? he had welcomed her back. wolverine had not. she had expected his support as wealda while snapping for the jaw of the leader he had appointed in her absence.

a long croon. a swing of his tail. moon runner was out in the world. he would not move from the rise until she came back, and he did not think the redtails meant to forcibly out him.

a vibrating sound. i will wait for wolverine and her mate.