Family Visit

[p] - Lucille

POSTED: Sat Dec 16, 2017 5:13 pm

OOC: Backdated to early December


The day was a bright one. The sky was a pale but clear blue and the sun was bright, even though it didn’t give off a great deal of heat, not that it hampered the winter storm eyed male. The quiet Cormier was used to the cold, and his thick winter coat had already grown in, making him look a least four times as bulky as usual. He was moving with a little more stiffness than usual, but that was only because he’d spent a fair few hours waist deep in quickly flowing and frigid water. Still it had been worth it, he had four huge silvery fish hanging from a pole slung over his shoulder. His faded shorts were wet and there was already a glistening pattern of frost forming on them. Also tied to the line were two live crayfish, their pincers tied with twine. Feeling like a real hunter gatherer, Storm was heading for a familiar cabin. Storm had been doing his best to see Lucille as often as he could, without wanting to intrude too much, and since he had gifts for her, he thought it would be acceptable to come over again.

Knocking on the door he waited for an answer, his ears swivelling. When no voice came through the door the Cormier male frowned and pushed the door open, putting his head around it and looking inside. Wonderfully familiar fragrances curled around him. Smells of home, smells of comfort and smells of love were all there, but also there was the figure of Lucille, sitting quietly at the table, and despite her long fur covering obscuring her eyes, Storm could tell she was deep in thought. Pushing the door all the way open, he stepped in and shut it behind himself. For a moment he stood silently, something he did very well it had to be said. Tentatively he cleared his throat, seeing Lucille finally turn to him, he waved a slightly shy greeting, flashing her a reassuring grin.

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Luperci Come sit by my fire

POSTED: Sun Dec 17, 2017 2:48 am

There was a half-eaten piece of venison on a plate in front of Lucille, but it had long gone cold. Her fur hid the weight she'd lost recently, but it was hard to eat when she was so worried about Oscar. While she had suspected that her children might someday leave the pack and see more of the world, she had not expected this. No, this was entirely different. Surely he had not left on his own, not when he hadn't been feeling well before that. Combined with the Vela siblings going missing as well... Lucille's mind just went in circles, trying to figure out what had happened.

She vaguely registered someone knocking on the door, but not enough to respond to it. The sound of the door opening and closing drew her out a little bit, but it was Storm clearing his throat that had her finally looking over to see who it was. Her face was blank for a moment, and then she was glad that her fur was covering her eyes, hiding the swirl of emotions.

"Hi, Storm," Lucille said to her adopted son. When she really thought about it, she supposed it could be a bit strange that he was like a son to her, but like a brother to Gus. She didn't care, though; it worked for them and that was that.

"How are you doing?" Lucille stood up and walked over, intending to give Storm a hug.

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POSTED: Fri Dec 29, 2017 6:24 am

No matter how old he became, Lucille’s hugs always took him back to when he was small. She smelt of warmth, of comfort and what had been most important, of safety. The petit sheepdog with the mismatched eyes had been a stalwart feature in a youth that had been deeply traumatised, and there had been difficult days, but there was always calm, always unrelenting serenity, and it had finally won him over. Despite all that love and all his family in Krokar, Storm only seldom found his voice, which had always given him time to her people speak and listen to what they said, or what they didn’t say, which was often more important.

Lucille’s sadness was palpable in the air, almost a physical thing and Storm held her, wishing he could somehow make her happy, but knowing all he could do was be there for her. It was a deeply sombre moment, and of course, Storm ruined it. The winter storm eyed Cormier’s stomach growled and gurgled after a morning spent expending huge amounts of physical effort. Storm had never been an easy luperci to fill, and the physical nature of life in Krokar doubtless didn’t help.

”I’m sorry.”
I’m sorry

His voice was hushed and as he spoke, he still made the gestures, but whether he was apologising for his stomach or for the fact Lucille was so sad, was unclear.

Glancing at the table, Storm saw the sheepdog’s unfinished meal.

”Y…you need t…to eat.”

He continued, his voice full of love and compassion, but also concern.

”I brought you something.”
I brought you something

He smiled quickly and proffered the silver fish and the crayfish.

”I can…” he stopped, turning away to hide his look of frustration as his words ran out, replaced by an overwhelming fear of dread, it was so stupid but it always happened. He put the gifts down and continued.

I can clean them, scale them and cook them if you like. Do you have a knife?

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Luperci Come sit by my fire

POSTED: Tue Jan 09, 2018 11:59 pm

WC: 359

Normally, Lucille was the one offering Storm comfort. She liked that role; she knew how to do that role. Lucille did not know how to be the one who needed comfort, how to be the vulnerable one, the one who was lost and needed direction. It was such a foreign thing to her, although it was nowhere near as upsetting as the fact that Oscar was missing.

But then Storm's stomach rumbled and Lucille blinked a few times, trying to decide if she really just heard that. It made her smile, even if it was a bit of a wobbly expression. It widened and became more solid as Storm spoke out loud, rather than only with his hands. Still, Lucille watched his hands move anyway. She could not help the habit that had been formed over several years, nor did she see any real reason to stop it.

“It’s okay,” she told him, figuring he was apologizing for his stomach growling. She knew how he was almost always hungry, so it was really only the timing of it that was notable. She followed his gaze to the table where her food was and then back to him. “I know,” she sighed, but Storm did not seem finished yet. She tipped her head in curiosity when he said that he brought her something, and she wondered what it was.

“Oh, thank you, Storm,” Lucille smiled at the fish and crayfish to eat. She watched him when he seemed to be no longer able to speak out loud and her smile became a patient one; Lucille didn’t mind how he spoke. She just liked that he spoke to her, even if it was with his hands. Sometimes Lucille thought to comfort him when this happened, but she was not sure if he would see it as patronizing or maybe even as condescending. So she simply waited.

“Yep over here,” Lucille said and retrieved it from a shelf. It was where she started putting it after her pups were born, and she never bothered to break the habit since it seemed like a good place to keep putting it.

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POSTED: Mon Jan 15, 2018 5:32 pm

Storm was glad to see the sheepdog smile, even if it was only wanly, and as she retreated to get the knives, the winter storm eyed Cormier moved a chair near the fire. He gratefully took the box and opened it to look at the well maintained and oiled knives. Each was in its proper place and clean, just looking at them Storm could tell they were sharp and didn’t need a whetstone, though he was sure there’d be one nearby. He selected one and withdrew it, the blade and the fish scales glittering a marvellous orange in the light of the fire. With deft hands Storm began to scale and gutting the fish, letting the scales disappear into the fire, but keeping the guts and putting them in a bucket so he could sue them for his waterproof paste later.

His experienced hands worked quickly and without hesitation, and for a little while Storm was quiet, allowing the familiar routine to ease the unease that had grown in him at his speaking before. Finally he cleared his throat, and his eyes still on his work, he spoke.

”I…know y-you’re feeling…sad.”

He said, somehow, when he couldn’t use his hands as well, his speech was a great deal more difficult.

”I…know why as well.”

He continued.

”Talk t-to me about it Lucille. Y-you know I c-can listen and I d-don’t talk a lot. Just the two of us here, and there’s never going to be a time when…I’m not here for you.”

For a moment his hands paused at their work and he looked around at the sheepdog, his gaze was filled with love for her and a quiet reassurance.

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Luperci Come sit by my fire

POSTED: Wed Jan 24, 2018 10:04 pm

WC: 510

Storm was right, of course. There were few that knew her better than he did. Lucille thought that part of that was because he did not talk much, with speaking aloud only a relatively recent thing, even between the two of them. She was never sure exactly how much to confide in him. He was an adult, yes, who had experienced his share of bad times and terrible circumstances. Those circumstances sometimes allowed Lucille to put into perspective the things that were was happening to her or causing her stress.

This was not one of those times, and she made no attempt to compare Oscar's disappearance with Storm's history. Still, she was having a difficult time with how much to share. She considered him to be one of her children, and she would not confide in any of her other children that way. They needed her support, her confidence, to help them get through and see that everything would be alright. But what if everything was not going to be alright?

It was a fine like she walked between shielding them too much, but also not confiding in them too much. Sometimes it was best to just stick to the facts. Despite her attempts to remain strong, her worry was showing, and not just to Storm. She had seen the glances from Norah and could tell that her daughter wanted to ask about everything that was going on. She did not ask, though, and Lucille wondered if it was because she was afraid of the answer. Lucille was afraid of the answer, too.

"I'm worried," she said with a sigh as she dragged a chair over to sit in front of the fire next to Storm. "For Reluceo and Thiago... and Oscar." She picked up a piece of kindling to have something to fidget with. "I don't know if we're going to find them. What if we do and it's too late?" It was as if the words were gaining momentum as she spoke, drawing more out. It felt taboo between her and Gus. Not finding their son was simply not an option, and neither was finding him too late. "It's been so long now. I always knew something could happen; I can't protect you or the rest forever. I just had hoped that nothing bad would happen. That you would all just stay safe."

Part of the reason canines formed packs was that there was safety in numbers. There was inherent danger in exploring beyond the pack lands, and especially in doing so alone. Even just patrolling the borders alone was dangerous, which was why Lucille had announced that it needed to be done at least in pairs.

"I don't know where else to look for him, or what clues we can even find." Lucille ran a hand over her face, pushing her hair out of the way for a moment as she glanced over at Storm. "I don't know what I'll do if we never find him."

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POSTED: Wed Jan 31, 2018 5:02 pm

Storm continued his preparations as the sheepdog brought her chair to sit beside him. The fire warmed the two of them as they sat, and it felt very intimate. For a long moment Lucille didn’t speak, but that was okay, Storm didn’t stop the gentle rhythm of his chores, letting her think to herself and come to terms with what she wanted to say. The winter storm eyed male was a quiet and comforting presence. Finally his adopted mum spoke and his ears quivered as he listened. He saw Lucille’s worry in the way she sat, the way she fiddled with the kindling. He could hear it in the tone of her voice. There was worry in that tone and sadness, and it made Storm’s heart ache. When Lucille finished the silence returned again, Storm continued with the food, and those who might not have known him well may have thought he was lost for words, but the winter storm eyed Cormier had never been one to speak quickly, choosing carefully. Finally he put aside the food and knelt in front of Lucille, resting his hands on her lap and looking up at her mismatched eyes that he knew so well. With his actions he let her known that he was there, his touch conveyed his proximity and his brief gaze was not challenging just a reassurance that he saw her. Deciding that his words would be far clunkier than the fluidity of his gestures, Storm began.

I have often wondered what would have happened if Gus had not found me. I would not have met you. What if the fire had not started on my boat that night and I had never dived into the sea? If we lived our lives through what ifs, we might never do anything in case the worst happened.

He leant back on his haunches, still thoughtful.

I could tell you everything will be fine. he shook his head and shrugged But I love you too much to do that. No one can tell you that. I can tell you this though. They all love you, we are all family, and they know where we are and that we are worried. If they can come home, they know where we are. If they do come back, they are going to need you, and you won’t be able to help them if you’re tired and hungry.”

He leant forwards and licked her black nose, smiling lovingly at her.

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Luperci Come sit by my fire

POSTED: Wed Jan 31, 2018 11:52 pm

WC: 569

Lucille did not expect Storm to answer her right away. It was partly because his hands were busy preparing the fish, but also because sometimes their conversations just went this way: she would speak, there would be some silence, and then he would respond. It confused her at first and made her wonder if he was actually listening to her at all. However she had quickly learned that yes, he was listening to everything she said and was only taking his time because he wanted to give a thought out answer.

The sheepdog mix watched the flames dance in the fireplace while waiting patiently as Storm thought. She wished she could do less thinking because it seemed like all her mind wanted to do was come up with terrible scenarios for what could have happened to Oscar, Thiago, and Reluceo, or things that could happen to them still if they were still alive.

No, they were still alive. They had to be. Lucille was not willing to even think that they were dead, especially Oscar. If she even started thinking that way, it would spiral down so quickly, and she still needed to lead this pack. She had to stay strong because the whole situation was confusing and scary for everyone probably.

Storm moved and Lucille watched him in silence. She had not felt the need to add more to what she said just to break the silence, and she did not do so now, either. Even though his hands smelled like fish, Lucille let him rest them in her lap. She covered his hands with hers for a moment, accepting the comfort his presence brought her. Then she moved her hands off of his, figuring that he needed them to talk to her. Lucille never expected him to speak out loud, and it was always a wonderful surprise when he did. It made her feel special that he was able to do that with her.

Lucille's gaze went to Storm's hands as he responded to her. She watched his gestures and his body language to understand what he was telling her. He was right, of course. She could not dwell on 'what if' because it would be pointless. Not only would it not help find their missing pack members, it could make things worse by causing inaction. Her eyes followed as Storm sat back. She always appreciated that Storm would not just tell her what she wanted to hear, or see as the case may be. He told her want she needed to hear.

She smiled as he licked her nose, and even managed a quiet laugh. She made a little face and her tongue lapped out to lick her nose because it felt funny now, and then she smiled again.

"I love you, too," Lucille said. "And I'll eat." Even if she was not hungry, she would eat the food that Storm brought her. "What I'm worried about is that they need our help coming home. I don't think they have been gone this long because they wanted to be, especially Oscar. I think they need us to find them." Maybe if it was just the Velas, she would not feel this way, but it was not only them. "I don't think they'll just come back to us."

Lucille wanted to find them and bring them home, wherever they were.

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POSTED: Fri Feb 23, 2018 4:42 pm

The warmth of the fire seemed to bring out the scent of Gus and Lucille. Despite his cooking and the pleasant smell of cooking fish, the winter storm eyed male was reminded of events that had happened a lifetime ago. He remembered a different home, swaddled in warm furs and hides and Lucille sat beside him trying to make him eat. He remembered the smouldering hatred he had felt towards the wiry male that had been her mate for killing his brother. Of course Gus had never killed his brother, the sea had done that, but it had taken Storm a long time to accept that, and the scavenger had given Storm space and time, while Lucille had tended him and loved him quietly. He owed his life to the two of them. The pair had shown him a kindness and acceptance he had, until then, never experienced before.

Now though, he felt useless and inadequate. He wanted to tell Lucille that it would all work itself out, but he didn’t know that and he couldn’t bear to give her false hope, especially if it were to be snuffed out. Tonight wasn’t about him though, tonight was for Lucille and what he could do was cook her food and be there for her. Anyone in Krokar could agree, Storm was not a talker, but he was a good listener, and he could lend his presence to Lucille.

He’d cut up a few things and dumped them into a pot, which Storm had hung over the fire. The smell of rich stew filled the hut and in the time it took him to get their dinner ready, Storm thought on Lucille’s words.

I wish I could help more. I hate to see you upset and not being able to do anything about it. We can all look for them, follow scents for them, but doing that in dark is not going to help anyone. I’m going to cook for you, and talk to you, and in the morning we can see if we can come up with a plan.

After a little while Storm dipped a stick into the stew and licked it. His forehead crinkled and he looked thoughtful, but finally nodded, and as if he was in his own home, found the utensils and poured stew into each gourd. He handed Lucille one of the bowls.

”I-it’s hot. I-it’ll warm y-you up.”

And it might even make the sheepdog feel a little comforted and drowsy, help her get a bit of sleep.

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Luperci Come sit by my fire

POSTED: Mon Mar 26, 2018 9:50 pm

WC: 365

Lucille watched the fire as Storm thought. Sometimes conversations with him were quick, but usually that was when he wasn't making food. She was also fine with conversations that moved slowly, with lots of thought between her statements out loud and his usually silent gestures. Sometimes they simply did not talk at all, and Lucille was fine with that as well.

It was nice having him bustling around her cabin. It made the place feel less empty, even though the only one of hers who was missing was Oscar. It was so strange how much of a difference his absence made, but maybe it was because she was so focused on that, rather than the fact that the rest of them were all still here. She couldn't focus on the good things, though, not while Oscar and the Vela siblings still needed her help.

She looked over when Storm spoke again, taking in his gestures and body language by the light of the fire. Lucille nodded; she knew that it did no one any good to worry endlessly. She wouldn't be able to actually do anything tonight, but knowing that didn't help her feel better no matter how much she wished that it would.

"Okay," Lucille said anyway because she saw no point in disagreeing when Storm was right. There was nothing they could do in the dark to help their missing pack mates. She also wouldn't say out loud that she couldn't help but wonder if there was anything they could do in the light to find them, either. They had already been looking and nothing helpful had turned up.

Lucille took the gourd bowl when Storm handed it to her and she sniffed it with a pleased sound.

"It smells good," Lucille said. "Thanks, Storm." Lucille took one of the carved wooden spoons from Storm so that she could take a bite after blowing on it so that she didn't burn her mouth. "Tastes good, too." Which was exactly what she had expected.

"What have you been up to?" Lucille asked, deciding that she wanted a bit of a distraction, at least for a little while.

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