sing until our jaws are broken

POSTED: Thu Aug 09, 2018 12:47 am

my heart was flawed, i knew my weakness

And so this was how it ended.

Redtooth had yet to return. Vicira either. His guts were right, broiled over with a brackish sludge at the realization; neither of them would return, after all, and they had left what remained of the clan to sit on the graves they had abandoned all over again. The little fire he had built had died to cinders and cooled away into the dwindling daylight. His gold eye stared out to what roved of the horses nearby, thinning in numbers, and he felt his stomach grow into knots. Riselka lingered nearby, haltered up and tied to a treebranch, but the others--

They couldn't possibly take them all.

The taste of horse-meat churned in his stomach, and he felt sick all over again; he couldn't hurt another, let his Uncle lead another of these beasts to slaughter to stave off their hunger. Nazario ashed his hands, and his lips thinned as he got up. Riselka pulled on the halter but he crooned to her, placed a sooty handprint onto her cheek, before he fetched more of his ashes, and approached the amassed horses. He drew circles, dots, stripes - shooed away the biting insects, and simply painted their hides in ashy gray, softly cooing his comforts to the familiar, to horses he had helped to tend to and work with, that had been there often in his youth; the ones that lived past fire, past plague, like the remains of the Clan.

They were family, in a way, and he felt his expression, soft with affection, twist a little with grief. He pressed his forehead to a mare's and touched two fingers to trace stripes down her velvety muzzle as she blew out a soft breath at him and nickered low in her throat.

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