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Step one, you say, we need to talk
Hidden Cove | Full summer | Morning | Cloudy-ish, patches of both sun and cover dappling the beach

Name Player
Yuna Nami Chris Staff

Her fur still wet from a cooling swim, Yuna had pulled out some of her older herb stocks and was now going through, sorting out what was still usable. Some of it wasn’t. She carefully dried most of her herbs before storing them, but the leaves and especially some of the flowers suffered in the heat, dried or not, and they didn’t last forever. Yuna settled on her belly just in front of the caverns, in the shade they cast, and sorted herbs into piles. She used a combination of senses - scents mostly, but how the herbs looked and even felt played their part.

She wasn’t close enough to the waterfall pool to see anything resembling her reflection, but her posture with slumped shoulders and backward-facing ears gave away there was more going on with the single mother than merely disappointment over loosing some herbs.

Jan 24, 2018 04:59 AM

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Name Player
Dante Wynter

Dante spotted a light shape near the waterfall and looked up, thinking it might he Chai, but the fur color was wrong- too intense.

Yuna, then. She’d been a constant presence along with her children, and even if Dante hadn’t spoken to her much beyond his occasional delivery of herbs, he’d noticed her- same as any of the other Tribe wolves. He’d been heading into the caves, no real goal in mind, but when he spotted her with a pile of what looked like herbs in front of her, he decided to approach.
When he went toward her, it was with a mind to ask her if there was any herb she needed in particular. He intended to go farther inland to search for some prey that wasn’t fish, and would choose his hunting grounds based on what supplies she might need.

He gave a gruff bark as he approached, though it was difficult to miss his dark shape against the lighter palette of the beach. Dante didn’t notice her somber demeanor until he was a little closer and actually paying attention to her body language. His brow furrowed more than normal, growing a shade more concerned.

Well, shit. Too late for him to go somewhere and mind his own business and leave her be- he’d already barged in and made his presence known.

’ey,” he said, sounding almost as though he’d been taken off guard. “This not a good time, Moonlight?

His voice was somewhat gentler than its usual gruff resonance.

Jan 26, 2018 07:44 AM — Post #1

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[ Edited: Jan 26, 2018 07:57 AM by Dante ]
Name Player
Yuna Nami Chris Staff

Dante’s voice sparked Yuna from her own inner thoughts, and her chin lifted to search his face at his bark. The contours of it were familiar to her by now, and not only because he shared certain superficial resemblances to Pace. He offered a greeting and she tried to summon a smile.

“Oh Dante, no, it’s fine.” He had clearly responded to despondent posture and she tried to settle more naturally, instead of clinging dully to the sand. She pushed a pile of totally dried-up herbs out of the way. “How are you and Chai doing in the cove?” She wondered if he had done any thinking about if he wanted to stay more full time. She knew her girls all adored him, and it certainly made her feel safer having his solid presence around. 

A home might be good for him, and maybe for Chai too, even though Yuna didn’t know Dante’s quiet mate well yet.

Jan 26, 2018 05:19 PM — Post #2

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Name Player
Dante Wynter

She asked how he was doing, and the corner of his lip pulled back slightly in a sort of subtle, one-sided grimace. He moved a little closer, and sat down a short distance to one side of her. He didn’t get close enough to crowd her or loom over her.

Still breathin’,” he said with a noncommittal shrug, not knowing if she meant his general well-being or how he felt about living on the beach. He was alive and healthy. That had been something to strive for, something to be proud of when he was some scrawny kid struggling to survive, but things were different now. But that was going to have to be enough for him, these days.

Chai seems to be doin’ alright. Havin’ kids around seems to help.” He wouldn’t go into that one. ‘Alright’ was a relative term. Dante paused briefly, then continued: “This one’a the rough days, huh?

Feb 01, 2018 11:58 AM — Post #3

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Name Player
Yuna Nami Chris Staff

Still breathin’ was not particularly positive, and Yuna’s ears swiveled back in worry, but Dante had a little more to say about Chai and how she was better with pups around. She knew he found it much easier to talk about others than himself. And he soon steered the conversation in a different direction - to her, and if she was having a rough day.

For a moment her paws stilled over the crumpled leaves she was sorting. “Yes.” She acknowledged honestly, a multitude of emotion in a single word. Tears threatened, but she would not allow them to fall. There was probably a telltale brightness in her eyes anyway. She had accepted it would always be like this. That no matter how much she loved her girls, however much joy there was in seeing them grow up, no length of time would ever heal her broken heart.

The company though, that was welcome.

Feb 01, 2018 07:03 PM — Post #4

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Name Player
Dante Wynter

Dante could see that Yuna wasn’t exactly convinced by his rather unenthusiastic response, but he really didn’t have much more to tell her on the matter- he wasn’t intending to withhold the information, but neither did he want to elaborate on that particular situation if he didn’t have to.

Her monosyllabic response was not unexpected, but Dante was nonetheless silent for a brief moment, watching the younger wolf’s face shift to a more somber expression. There was a low rumble in his chest, more an inarticulate sound of acknowledgement than anything. When he spoke, it was almost hesitant at first.

You get good days an’ bad days… I feel better if I got somethin’ to focus on when things ain’t goin’ so well. I was headin’ inland, was gonna ask if you needed anything.” He lowered his muzzle to indicate the herbs that she had been arranging. Dante wasn’t very good at comforting, not when the wolf in question was an adult, and simple assurances wouldn’t do. Problems were much easier to solve when you were young. He was pretty decent with distractions, though.

You wanna come with?

Feb 05, 2018 12:12 AM — Post #5

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Name Player
Yuna Nami Chris Staff

Dante offered a few words of comfort, which, for Dante was actually quite a few words of comfort. Yuna knew he was making an effort, and that was touching. She wondered if Dante’s children were still alive. If they were with Chai. It was not her way to pressure him into talking about a topic that, last time he had been so private about. He knew her, by now, knew her well enough that he could come to her if he needed it.

But Yuna too, knew Dante well. Well enough that opening up was not something he did often, to many wolves. Maybe he confided more in his mate and sister. She could only hope, otherwise everything he bottled up would only worsen with each passing moon.

“I understand that.” She nodded since when he revealed he liked something to keep him busy when he was feeling down. She had already guessed as much by all the herbs he had brought her.

“I’d better stay close to home to watch the girls, but thank you for asking.” She looked up to meet his gaze, sincere in her thanks. “Only if it’s not too much bother to bring a few things back… do you know the herbs goatweed with the yellow flowers? And chamomile?”

Feb 06, 2018 07:06 AM — Post #6

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Name Player
Dante Wynter

Dante’s offer was declined, though Yuna’s reasons were good ones. She had children to watch over. Even when he had ranged far from his family, he’d always known that Chai was there to watch the children, and he’d known that the friends he’d made in the Brotherhood would keep them safe while he was away. Maybe he should have been less willing to leave them even in the course of his duties. Maybe that would have changed things for him

Yuna didn’t have a mate to watch her pups. Maybe there wasn’t anyone else here she trusted with them- or maybe she just didn’t want to go. Either way, Dante didn’t dwell on it.

She asked if he knew of some specific plants, and he looked momentarily thoughtful.

Chamomile, yeah. Not the other one.

The expression remained.

Feb 08, 2018 08:42 PM — Post #7

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Name Player
Yuna Nami Chris Staff

The description came her lips readily enough. Clearly Yuna didn’t have to stop to pull the appearance of the herb to the forefront of her mind.

“Goatsweed has long, slender dark green leaves and small yellow flowers. It likes the sun and will grow almost anywhere, and can grow quite high.” She showed the height with her paw, up around her own shoulder height. 

There was something else that he could do, and she asked with obvious hesitation.

“Dante… would you mind taking the girls out to the plains for a hunting lesson, sometime?” She asked softly, recalling her wish for her girls to be less restricted than she was. Her bond to the ocean had left her tied to it, unable to easily travel far from it and still support herself. Mahalo, especially might benefit from the attention from somebody outside her family.

She had asked this of only Dante and Renegade, essentially the only two males Yuna really trusted who were close by. Efeon she was sure would help out once they went to visit the Rangers, but she’d have to see how the girls were going before setting off on that particular trip.

She thought then of Fray, and swallowed hard. She didn’t know if she would ever see him again by this point.

Feb 09, 2018 12:34 AM — Post #8

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Name Player
Dante Wynter

Dante’s expression grew q bit more focused as he listened to the herb’s description, knowing that it was important to know what he was looking for before he started chomping on unknown plants. He didn’t really know if that was enough to go on, though, since there were a few other plants he knew that could match that description, and was about to ask if she would elaborate when he noticed Yuna’s demeanor had shifted a bit. She seemed about to say something, so he waited.

Dante looked at her for a moment as the question hit him, and something like bemusement crossed his face, as though he hadn’t quite understood what she had asked him.

He didn’t know her reasons for asking him, specifically. Maybe she didn’t have anyone else to turn to, and he might have been flattered otherwise. It was nice to have a purpose, some reason that everyone else should put up with him. But it seemed like a cruel joke played on him by some unseen jester, for her to ask him to do something for her children that he’d never really been able to do for his own. One of the many moments he’d missed out on and would never get back. Sometimes that loss stung him in unexpected ways, and here was a place that still hurt when he prodded it.

Dante breathed out a small sigh through his nose, features shifting to something a bit more contemplative. He wanted to help where he could, and he didn’t want to set a limit on that. Especially not when it came to pups. Helping Yuna’s kids learn how to hunt should have been an easy ‘yes’ for him.

I… I dunno if you want me for that,” he said hesitantly, though there wasn’t anything defensive in his voice, and he spoke more quietly than usual. 

He shouldn’t have said that- he felt immediately guilty, maybe a little selfish. It wasn’t even logical, the way he felt. At a certain point he was going to have to get over his sad, shitty life and suck it up and let things go back to the way they had been before. Move on. Get better. Soldier on.

That was what was expected of him, after all. Wasn’t he supposed to be tough? Resilient? Shouldn’t he be able to let things go, the way his sister could? Dante’s gaze shifted away from Yuna, looking down at the sand-dusted herbs at her feet.

Feb 13, 2018 11:06 PM — Post #9

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Name Player
Yuna Nami Chris Staff

As Yuna studied Dante’s gruff features a cloud passing overhead cast them into even more gloom. She didn’t push him for an answer, and when it came the low, almost defeated sound of his voice surprised Yuna. She composed her expression almost at once, understanding in her eyes as she ran over the possibilities. What she knew of Dante. He was closed-mouthed about his past in that way that some stoic males often were. But she knew enough to assemble some sort of guesses as to what was motivating him in that moment.

“I do actually.” She confirmed quietly as she usually spoke, but more intensely, her ears coming forwards to Dante. “I’m not in the habit of asking just anybody to take my girls on. But I’ve overstepped; I don’t want to bring up any negative memories for you. Please excuse my forwardness.” 

As Dante bowed his head and gazed at the sand, so did Yuna, contrite and submissive as ever. She was never going to change that. No wonder she couldn’t even give her girls a simple hunting lesson.

Feb 16, 2018 07:39 AM — Post #10

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