I'm always gonna have your back

And if nothing else you can always count on that

POSTED: Sat Mar 16, 2019 2:20 pm

Secui | Winterwynd (Ragna’s house) | Backdated: March 5th; morning
yNPCs: Skadi, Sindri, Steinarr
NPC: Glade (+1,069)

Puppies are born!

Glade had half-dragged, half-carried his prize all the way back to the homestead. The early spring sun shined brightly onto his earthen pelt, warming his flesh and warding off the morning chill. The sky was clear of any clouds and already a vibrant blue. Birds sang their merry tunes, perhaps even serenading the little mustelid for a job well done as he passed underway. It was a perfect morning, and one that he felt his Luperci companion might enjoy.

The horses had rumbled at him, welcoming the little hunter back from his early morning exploits. Glade passed them by and made his way to the back porch. He grunted as he tugged the large, fat rabbit up the concrete steps. The kill had been one of the hardest ones he had had in recent times. The rabbit had zigged and zagged over the open plain, and when Glade had finally leapt onto its back, teeth sinking into the back of its neck, the critter had romped like a bucking bronco to loosen his grip. The marten was an expert hunter though, and his drive to catch something so large was unmatched by even his prey fighting for its life.

When he had finally made it up the last step, he excitedly pulled the dead rabbit through the cracked doorway. Spitting it out of his mouth, he called into the house, “Ragna! Caught breakfast fo—!” He stopped mid-announcement as a peculiar smell reached his nostrils. His little nose twitched as he took a few more sniffs. He smelt…blood? Quickly, he licked his lips and nose, trying to make sure it wasn’t just the rabbit’s blood he’d smelt. Another few sniffs, and the smell did not lessen.

“Ragna?” He called out, his voice full of worry. He abandoned the dead rabbit, scampering further into the home. He checked the main rooms with a quick, anxious glance. Nothing. Panic began to rise in him as he skittered off towards the bedroom that the Eklund had been using more and more in recent weeks.

The scent of blood grew stronger in his nostrils, and as he came to a screeching halt, he realized why. The hefty, bulky form of Ragna in Secui met him. Her eyes were closed, her breath soft and deep, indicating slumber. She laid amongst the many furs the pair of them had amassed over the past year they had been with the Vale. She lay slightly curled, with her back pressed up against Brimstone’s saddle. It was the movement at her swollen belly though that Glade’s eyes were drawn.

Three dark masses wriggled and pawed as they suckled.

Glade blinked once, twice, three times. Slowly, he crept forward. He was in complete awe of what he was looking at. “Ragna…babies?” He gasped softly. The marten’s beady eyes looked each of the little Luperci over. He had never seen newborns before. They were so small, smaller than even him! Their backs were dark, fading to lighter creams towards their little bellies, though, some broke up the dark colors on their backs. They were all varying degrees of grey, and all of them had bright pink noses and toes. Their eyes were all shut tight, as if what dim amount of sunlight lit the room was too much for them.

Quietly, Glade moved to his friend, his hand-paws patting her large snout insistently to wake her. “Ragna, Ragna!” He whispered loudly.

Groggily, an icy blue eye peered at him. “Mmm?”

“You have babies!” He chattered excitedly.

“I’m aware,” she grumbled. It wasn’t like she had spent the whole morning birthing them and cleaning up.

Glade whined, “Why no tell?”

She grunted, her jaws parting wide as she let out a yawn. “You were already gone,” she pointed out. Her head shifted to look at the new life huddled against her stomach. “Trust me when I say that you didn’t miss much.” He probably would have been fretting the entire time. Ragna laid her head back down, her tongue slipping out to plant a kiss on one of the ones nearest to her nose.

Her words reminded Glade of his kill. “Oh!” He squeaked. “Caught breakfast for! You hungry?” He moved closer to her and patted at her thickly furred neck. “Rabbit! Big rabbit!”

Ragna took in a deep breath before letting it back out slowly. “I suppose I could eat.” She wasn’t exactly hungry, but, she knew she needed to eat, or, at least, so her instincts told her.

The marten skittered off to retrieve the dead rabbit, and Ragna could hear the soft scraping of something being dragged across the floorboards. A moment later, Glade appeared with the biggest rabbit Ragna had ever seen the mustelid catch. She raised her head. Her surprise was written clearly on her face, her brows rising high as she took in the sight of the plump thing. “How did you manage to catch that?”

Glade grunted as he pulled it the last few feet over to her. “Surprised after belly fat with grass.”

She hummed her acknowledgment. The Eklund moved to stand, only to abruptly stop as she felt weight pull against her teats. She blinked before shaking her head. It was something she would have to get used to; being a mother. She gently nosed her little babies, detaching them from their hungry hold on her body. They began to whimper and cry out as their heat and food source left them. They wiggled and wormed their way around the bedfur, searching for their mother.

Ragna’s instincts told her to lay back down and comfort them, but, Glade skittered his way over to the three. “Ragna need eat too, babies,” he told them softly. He gently tugged one by the nape, pulling it back to its siblings. “I keep warm, little Ragna babies.” Once he had gathered them as close together as he could, he spread his long, lanky body over them. His warmth quieted them, as well as ceased their attempt to search for Ragna.

She smiled softly at Glade’s attempt to aide her before she turned to devour the rabbit that he had brought her. While she had no mate, had no family, and had no close friends, she had her little marten friend, and he had proven to be more than enough.

Ragna Eklund

Mistfell Vale
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Luperci Scout II
Do not go gentle
into that good night

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