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 Crøw's Støry: Liƒe øf †he Willøw Wølf (Chapter 8 is up!)

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Join date : 2010-07-21
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PostSubject: Crøw's Støry: Liƒe øf †he Willøw Wølf (Chapter 8 is up!)   Sat Jul 24, 2010 12:44 am

Just a story about Crow's life before she was in a real pack. All the unfamiliar words are Galician and their translations are at the bottom. Hope you like it!

Prologue: The Willow Children

This is the story of a family; family of ancient roots and bloodlines, stretching back all they way to the ancients. They lived in a willow grove on the shores of the Antigo River of the Galician valley. It was spring at the time, and the wolves were all centered at one particular tree that served as their den. All were present except for Medica, the healer of the pack. She was in the willow den, nuzzling her newborn pups. Her mate, Sabio, was sitting anxious and excited at the entrance. He opened his mouth to speak, but hesitated. Medica had been a little short with him all morning from delivering the pups. He decided to go ahead and ask,

"Medica, my doce, are you ready to come out yet?" Sabio nervously pawed the ground as he waited to see his new pups. He didn't have to wait too long; muted grunts and whines became clearer as the white figure of Medica slowly emerged from the den. She looked exhausted, but happy. Sabio and his mate greeted each other before Medica turned back to the den. She emerged with the first newborn; a larger than normal male with muddy brown fur like his father, if it weren't for the bronzy highlights on his face and legs. Medica looked at Sabio and said,

"This is Falico. He looks a lot like you, my love." She smiled and turned around to bring out another little bundle. This pup was a dusky grey with one black sock on her front paw and a black belly. Once again she turned to Sabio and said,

"This little girl is Karvo. She reminds me of your father, Noito." Then Medica returned to the den to bring back another pup. He was a misty-like grey everywhere except for his belly which was a maroon-red.

"Another little boy, Sabio! He will be called Pardal." Another trip to the den, and she placed the last pup next to the others. Her fur was unlike any other pattern of the family. The closest to it was Sabio with his murky brown fur. His yellow eyes were wide as he gazed at his unique pup. She was a rusty brown with a sandy belly, with dark dark brown speckles along her back and sides. Her paws were the same as the speckles along with her muzzle, ears, and tail. Medica's blue eyes met Sabio's as she said,

"And this is Corva." She paused as she noticed that the most colorful pup was also the smallest. A look of pity flashed over Medica's and Sabio's face as they realized that they had a runt. Corva was in perfect health along with the others in her litter. Their eyes were still closed as they blindly crawled over each other, softly grunting and whining. Sabio broke the awkward silence that had fallen over the group and said,

"The spring group of willow pups has been born!" Medica picked up on his signal and smiled warmly to the pack. Noito, a midnight black wolf with equally dark brown eyes was sitting next to his mate, Diamanta, a pearly white wolf with brown eyes like Noito. They were the alpha pair, and Noito was Sabio's father, so their normally unacceptable litter was welcomed warmly. Sabio was also a wise wolf, so he was highly respected as well. Medica and her sister, Rapida, had been nomads until they were accepted into Noito's and Diamanta's family. The rest of the pack: Rapida, a huntress and Medica's sister; Ancio, the elder and Noito's and Forte's father; and Forte, the pack's strongest member and Noito's brother gathered around with tails wagging and happy barks of joy. It would be a good spring.

Chapter One: The Loita of Corva

The first few weeks of the willow pups' lives were normal; they nursed from their mother and grew strong, eyes opened, paws made their first shaky steps, eye colors became visible, personalities emerged, and a rejuvenating energy rippled through the territory. Everyone walked with their heads high and with a spring in their step; they had something to live for and protect once again. This litter was more exciting than usual due to a lost litter the previous year. Diamanta had had three pups, but they were early and didn't survive there first days. It had been terrible, but she treated this litter like they were her own.

The pups were growing up rapidly and soon Sabio and Medica noticed each individual's attributes. Falico, the eldest, had hazel eyes and liked to keep to himself. He was sort of a bully too. Karvo could almost hypnotize a wolf with her piercing blue eyes. She was very talkative and could be friends with anybody. Pardal had happy bright brown eyes and was always cheerful. He could make anyone laugh and was very clumsy as well.

Corva was unique in her eye color as well. Her father's yellow eyes and her mother's blue eyes had somehow given Corva green eyes. They weren't a true green, but looked like new spring grass. She was quiet like Falico, but nicer. Corva learned fast from Ancio who told the pups stories of old and from her mother who began to teach her medicine. But she was doubted; her size made others think she wouldn't make it, but Corva sought to prove them wrong.

Rapida was the rudest about her size and commented about it endlessly. She would constantly degrade Medica, Sabio, and Corva with comments like, 'Why do you even bother with the thing?' or 'You know she's not going to make it.' and even threats like 'If you don't do something about the runt, I will. She makes us look bad.' Medica, being calm and in control, would only frown and walk off. Noito and Diamanta noticed her constant bullying of Medica, but since Rapida was their main hunter, they couldn't get rid of her. Sabio tried to help by comforting Medica, but Corva was almost unaffected.

She used her learning abilities and wit to her advantage in her lessons with Medica and Ancio. Soon she could identify all of the major healing plants. Her father was also a healer, but he used the ways of the ancients such as artifacts, talismans, and chants. Corva also learned from him. He taught her the words of the sun, moon, and rain. He also taught her about his talismans. The Pedra da Folla Roxa was meant to heal fatal injuries and used with the right herbs, could bring someone back to life. It was a purple leaf-shaped rock that shimmered in the moonlight. Sabio told her only to use it if you can find the Pedra do Sol Amarelo. He told her that the Pedra da Folla Roxa regained power by claiming the alma of the giver through the full moon. The Pedra do Sol Amarelo could stop it from happening with the sun's light. Another one was the Orballo Luar. It could give a boost of energy and help fight starvation. Corva inherited the Pedra da Folla Roxa and the Orballo Luar, but Sabio said that the Pedra do Sol Amarelo could only be found if you had used the Pedra da Folla Roxa. Corva kept them on a necklace made of twine she had found in the willow grove. She hadn't been able to prove herself though.

One afternoon, Rapida went out to hunt elk with Forte and Noito. She came back with a broken leg from a kick. Medica had gone out to gather herbs, so Corva was the only one able to treat Rapida. She acted quickly; grabbing poppy seeds for pain, moss and water for the blood, a sturdy stick for a splint and a long bendable willow branch to tie it with. Corva started without hesitation and ordered Rapida to eat the poppy seeds for the pain. Then she used water to rinse the wound and moss for gauze. Corva oriented Rapida's leg as straight as possible and tied the branch to it with the willow vine, and sent her on her way with more poppy seeds.

No one could figure out why Corva had helped Rapida after all the rude comments she had made about her being a runt, especially Rapida herself. She promised never to be rude to Corva or Medica ever again. Corva smiled and said,

"It's my chamada I guess." Rapida made a full recovery from her injury over the next few weeks, and never said anything downgrading to Medica and her daughter ever again. Corva had finally proven herself.

Chapter Two: The Blood-stained Willows

The pups were now almost a year old, and preparations for the milestone had ensued. Medica made her daughter a statue of a willow out of a jadestone, Sabio and Ancio enchanted an eagle feather into an Encanto da Lúa, and even Rapida made a small gift of sweet-smelling narcisos. Karvo, Pardal, and Falico all were going to receive one-year gifts as well such as small decorated branches, necklaces with different symbols, and their favorite food; fish.

Fish were plentiful in the Antigo river, ranging from the puny minnows to the hefty bass and catfish. Diamanta, Rapida, and Forte were the best at catching them. Forte could dive to the bottom and come up with a five pound catfish. Rapida preferred to sit on the bank and watch for perch, then quickly snatch them from the water. Diamanta was the best at it; she would catch dragonflies and dangle them above the water by her paw. Bass love them, so naturally the jumped out of the water to get them. Diamanta would then grab it in her jaws and set it on the bank.

On the day before the milestone, everyone readied their gifts for the pups. Everyone but Sabio placed theirs carefully in front of the den that night so they would be the first thing the pups saw. After a restless and excited night, the willow pups emerged from the den. They were bleary eyed, but none the less excited for their special day. Falico was the first one out. He bounded over to his parents to receive a flat piece of tree bark with a hawk painted on it. Pardal was right behind him and received a twine necklace with a red stone threaded onto it. Karvo and Corva woke up a little later, but were as excited as their brothers. Karvo was given a beautiful bouquet of papoilas; some blue, purple, and even a pink one. Everyone had fresh fish that morning for breakfast.

Corva looked around for her gifts, which were nowhere to be found. She walked over to her parents and asked in her pup-ish language,

"Where are my regalos? I can't find them anywhere!" Medica and Sabio grinned at each other and Sabio spoke,

"Go to the lake at the end of the Antigo. You can find them there." Corva's face lit up as she bounded off down the river to the lake. Sabio smiled again, but Medica was a little worried. She turned to Sabio and asked,

"Are you sure it's safe? Sending her out on her own all the way to the lago?" Sabio nuzzled her reassuringly and replied,

"Don't worry my doce, Corva knows this place like the back of her paw. Nothing will happen. Come, let's go celebrate with the rest of our family." He playfully tugged at her ear and she reluctantly followed to join the group.

Corva wasted no time on her way to the lake as she bounded down the pebbled river bank. Thoughts buzzed through her mind as to what her presents could be; would she get a painted picture like Falico? Would it be a necklace? Maybe more fish? Maybe even flowers! She yipped happily and soon came to the lake.

The Antigo Lago, as it was called, was known for its turquoise waters and for the large willows that grew there. The water was almost always still and it was rumored that the spirit Augano lived there. Corva skidded to a stop on the pebbles and looked around the banks. She could smell Rapida's and her parents' trails and followed them around the lake. The first gift Corva found was the bouquet of narcisos. She sniffed the beautiful yellow flowers before continuing along the trail, carrying them in her mouth.

The next gift was a jadestone statue of a willow tree. It was gorgeous; its surface caught the light perfectly and it had a little hole at the top for stringing it onto a necklace. Corva did her best to carry both of the gifts, but had to settle with putting them in one spot to come back to. She lay them together on the bank and continued on to find her next gift.

It was the Encanto da Lúa eagle feather. Corva looked at the feather's varied colors, from white to grey and to black, then back to white. It was also strung on a piece of twine for a necklace. Corva grinned and picked it up to carry to the rest of her gifts. She looped the twine through the jade statue and did her best to tie it around her neck. Next, Corva picked up the flowers and headed back down the bank.

It would've been a peaceful walk had she not heard a series of loud bangs and the cries of wounded wolves. Corva dropped the flowers and bolted back to the den. More and more loud explosions and cries echoed back to her. She gritted her teeth and tried to go faster, nearly slipping on the pebbles. Her paws flew over them now and soon she reached the den clearing. She stopped at the edge of the trees.

The wolves, her family, were scattered around the now blood-stained densite. There were strange figures on two legs, appearing to be laughing and pointing at the bodies of her pack. They wore strange colors that mimicked those of the forest and carried strange wooden and metal objects. There were also dogs; three of them, sniffing around her fallen family and friends. She couldn't take it any more as she backed up a few paces, completely in shock. Corva stumbled through the woods, blinded by her tears. She ran for hours, and soon it was nightfall.

Finally Corva collapsed under a willow, the farthest one away from the den. The image of her dead family kept showing itself again and again. The laughter of the strange two-legs echoing all around her. She curled up into a tight ball and fell asleep, falling into one nightmare after another.

Corva was alone.

Chapter Three: A Wolf, a Fox, and Lessons

That night was one of the longest one of her life. Corva twisted and turned in her sleep, nightmares of her now gone family plagued her mind. She saw her siblings' figures running around her, screaming,

"You left us! You left us! Tridora!" Her parents' figures were there as well, sitting by each other with disappointed looks on their faces. She also saw Rapida; scowling at her when she spoke,

"Está condenado." Ancio and Forte were sitting behind her, expressionless. Her grandfather's pale grey eyes seemed to be saying,

"Go." That's when Noito and Diamanta appeared. They were snarling and growling as they came barreling towards her. Corva was frozen to the spot as her family's sprits raced towards her. She readied herself as Noito finally slammed into her. That's when she woke.

Corva sat bolt upright and barked,
"Non!" She was a total wreck; her fur was standing on end, her legs might well have been jelly, and her heartbeat seemed like it could be heard for miles. Corva leaned against the willow to steady herself, when she noticed a blurred figure sitting a few yards away.

She tried focused her vision against the morning sun on it, and soon it came into view. The first thing Corva noticed were the colors; it was a deep scarlet red coupled with a pastel cream. Then she noticed its eyes. They were a hypnotizing turquoise with flecks of icy blue and forest green. Then she realized, 'It's...it's..a fox!

An instinctive growl rose in her throat. Foxes were like coyotes to pups, but not quite as aggressive. Her vision had returned to its normal state, and she was able to see that the fox's muzzle was peppered with variants of white and grey, signaling he was many moons older than her. Corva could also now tell he was smiling, no, laughing! She stopped growling and tilted her head, completely perplexed by this strange animal.

"Um, pardon me, but what, who are you laughing at?" This only made the fox laugh harder as he struggled to stay in a sitting position. Corva struggled to keep from growling again, for she now knew the fox posed no threat to her. Finally, he spoke. His voice was like the Earth had spoken; it was a deep tone, gravelly, yet not unkind. Corva listened intently to his strange words,

"Young one, I was merely tittering at your atypical morning mien." She was even more confused now. Corva silently chastised herself for not paying more attention in her language lessons with Diamanta as she tried to discern what the old fox was saying. The fox picked up on her confusion and cleared his throat.

"I was laughing at your strange morning behavior. Did you undergo an incubus?" Corva gave him another confused look, and he returned it with a slightly annoyed one.

"A nightmare. Did you have one?" Recognition flooded her features as Corva finally could understand what he was saying. She replied,

"Non é nada. Don't worry about me." It was the fox's turn to be confused. Corva noticed it and replied a little matter-of-factly,

"Galician for 'it's nothing.' Why are you here anyway?" The fox smiled again and scoffed,

"I'm cruising my vicinity." He paused for a second to see if Corva was still confused, which of course she was, and continued,

"Patrolling my territory. You're a wolf; you've probably done it before." Corva was now starting to become annoyed when the fox started to speak of territory. Then the past day's events flooded back to her. She lowered her head until she was looking at her paws as she tried to fight back tears. The fox sensed something was wrong and said,

"My atonements. I didn't mean to disconcert you." He stood up and walked over to Corva, placing a paw on her shoulder. She noticed she was a few pawlengths shorter than the fox, or he was just large for his size. Corva didn't even ask what he meant as her tears began to flood back. The fox stood there patiently like any grandfather would when comforting a child with his paw on Corva's shoulder.

After a few minutes of sobbing, Corva managed to regain her composure and say,

"Sentímolo. It's just that I lost my family recently..." She broke into tears again, but recovered a few seconds later. The fox only nodded and signaled for her to follow him. Corva went without saying anything; she had nowhere else to go.

••••••••Å ƒew høurs lå†er•••••••••

Corva had now dried her eyes and composed herself as she and the fox traveled. She wanted to know where they were going, but at the same time, didn't want to look dumb again from the fox's vocabulary. Corva decided to stay quiet until her questions answered themselves, and soon, they did.

At first she smelled water, and lots of it. She lifter her head some to confirm it as she saw a distant shimmer ahead of them. Soon the green tops of trees and other plant life came into focus as well. Corva smiled excitedly as she knew that soon they would have some water. The fox, who was leading, turned his head a little and said,

"This is my domicile; the Lapė Marsh." As they began to walk under and among the plants, Corva noticed a drastic temperature difference from the fields they had crossed. Compared to the summer sun, the marsh was like being in a cave. It was cool with hints of water vapor in the air and the smell of various aquatic creatures. Corva was also surprised to find out about the almost complete lack of mud that anyone would think to be in a swamp. The ground they walked upon was hard-packed clay. Corva marveled at the other spectacles of the marsh; there were many many dragonflies buzzing and hovering around them, birdsong unlike any other Corva had heard before, and all the plant life around them. She also spotted a willow tree.

The fox started to lead her towards it and soon the pair came to a clearing that contained the willow. They slowed down and finally stopped to rest in its shade. Then Corva asked,

"Why did you take me here anyway? After all, I am on your 'vicinity'. You should've chased me off." The fox chuckled softly at her and replied,

"I'm too old for that; besides, I fancy peace rather than strife." Corva nodded her head, pretending like she knew what he had said. The fox called her bluff and replied,

"I prefer quiet to squabbling with intruders. It would also be nice to have someone to talk to other than the birds." Corva smiled some and said,

"I wish I'd had that." The fox stayed silent as he thought about what Corva had just said. He knew her family had been killed, she told him that, but he couldn't figure out how. From what Corva had just stated, it must have been fighting. 'Or, he thought, ,something had declared war on her family. He sighed quietly, then broke the silence between them,

"How would you fancy becoming my neophyte?" Corva peered at him questioningly, and the fox responded with another slightly annoyed look.

"Would you like to become my apprentice? I can teach you the basics of survival and medicine, considering you never really got that contingency and I am able to edify you." Corva's features lit up as she smiled, the first genuine one since her family had been killed, and excitedly replied,

"Eu adoro! That would be wonderful." The fox returned the smile and said,

"Well, instructions don't edify themselves!" Corva laughed some and wondered why the fox spoke the way she did. Corva herself didn't learn English as a first language, but Galician. The fox didn't need to look to see if she was confused and said,

"Lessons don't teach themselves; might as well start."

Chapter Four: Corva the Neophyte

The pair rested after their journey for a few minutes, then lessons began. The fox led Corva to a dry stream bed dotted with rabbit warrens with bird nests in the trees above. They stopped on one end of it when the fox spoke,

"This is the central game location." Corva didn't need to ask what he meant, for she could see the abundance of prey items. She watched the rabbits scurry from one hole to another, robins and sparrows hopped around looking for food, and even a family of wild turkey passing through. The fox grinned at Corva's awed face and asked,

"So what do you call yourself anyway?" This snapped Corva out of her gawking, and she replied,

"Corva. You can call me Corva." The fox nodded and said,

"Alright then. Let's start with hunting techniques and tactics." Corva took a few deep breaths as she readied herself for whatever would happen. She really had no idea, for she'd never been on a hunt for anything other than herbs. The fox took a deep breath and started the lecture.

"First of all, you must choose a target." He paused and pointed with a paw to a hefty-looking rabbit foraging among the brush.

"Then you must stalk until you are within pouncing range." The fox lowered himself until the cream fur of his belly was brushing the sand. He then started to crawl towards the rabbit, keeping close to the brush. Corva watched intently as the fox would sneak up on the rabbit a few feet, then stop with ears perked and nose twitching. He stopped behind a fern, only two wolf lengths away from the oblivious rabbit. Corva noticed him bunching up his back legs and getting ready to jump. A few seconds later, he arced up over the fern and landed on top of the rabbit, pinning it. Corva watched as he quickly bit it around the neck, causing the rabbit's useless squirming to end.

"And that would be a successful hunt." Corva smiled, but half-heartedly as she realized she would actually have to kill a living thing. My family did it, so can I. ,she thought to herself. Corva swallowed a little anxious as the fox trotted back over, carrying the rabbit. He set it down and turned to Corva,

"Alright pup, now it's your turn." Corva nodded and scanned the stream bed. She decided to go after a sparrow that was hopping across the area. Corva followed the fox's example; she lowered her body until her belly fur brushed the sand, and slowly crept up towards the sparrow. Corva kept close to the bushes to use them as camouflage, her mottled brown fur blending perfectly with the sand.

She was now only a few pawsteps away from the sparrow. Corva sat still for a few moments while she bunched up her back legs and readied for the pounce. Corva swallowed nervously and thought, Here goes nothing. She leapt forward with paws outstretched to capture the bird. The sparrow turned suddenly, not even knowing she was there, and tried to fly away. Corva was quicker. She caught its wing with her right paw, setting it off balance. It toppled down as Corva landed, pinning the bird by its wing.

"Sinto moito!" ,she said quietly to the bird. Corva quickly ended the episode and walked back to the fox with the sparrow in her mouth and her tail wagging proudly behing her. She set it down by the rabbit and said,

"Did I do it right?" The fox nodded, smiling, and replied,

"You did well for your first time, pup." ,Corva grinned in reply as the fox continued,

"Might as well have supper!" The fox picked up the rabbit he'd caught and trotted back to the den clearing. Corva picked up her sparrow as well and followed closely behind him.

A few minutes passed and they had entered the small clearing. They picked spots to lay down and eat their catches. Soon they had finished their meal and darkness was fast approaching. Corva yawned and looked sideways at the fox to see if he was tired. He was neatly curled up with his eyes half-way open, watching the water flow by in front of the clearing. Corva sighed and said,

"I think I will go to bed now. Boa noite!" Corva slowly got up and walked over to a nearby group of ferns. She crawled underneath them and curled up with the tip of her tail brushing the side of her muzzle. The fox finally yawned and replied,

"Might as well; it's getting close to the time for the Marsh Monster to come out." He smirked evilly and added,

"They love wolves." Corva's closing eyes shot open at his last remark. She started to reply,

"Mmmarsh m...monster?" ,but the fox had already fallen asleep.

Chapter 5: The Neophyte Continues

After an almost sleepless night, Corva awoke to see the fox rummaging around some of the plants near the clearing. They were different than the surrounding foliage and she could recognize a few of them from her mother's garden. Then she remembered that the fox was a healer like her. She yawned and got up to stretch.

The fox noticed Corva had gotten up and walked over, a smug grin on his muzzle.

"My apologies about the Marsh Monster thing; I couldn't help myself." Corva shot him a slightly annoyed look and replied,

"I wasn't scared," The fox raised an eyebrow as she spoke, then Corva decided to rephrase.

", Fine! But in my defense, that was my first night here and I'm only a yearling!" The fox laughed and said,

"All right then pup. Let's start today's lessons." With that, the fox turned and walked back towards the dry stream-bed they had gone to yesterday. They quickly arrived as the fox instructed Corva;

"Remember what you practiced yesterday, and catch breakfast." Corva nodded and scanned the gully until she spotted a hare emerging from its burrow. She dropped to the ground and began stalking towards it. Soon she was within a few feet of it, her fur camouflaging her perfectly. She readied herself to spring as the rabbit shuffled around, oblivious to the danger. Corva took a deep breath, then jumped after the hare. She had taken it by surprise, so it didn't get a good start as it ran. Corva easily followed its swerves and turns, and soon was able to pin it down. She quickly delivered the ending bite, then walked back to the fox with her prize. After setting it down she said,

"There! I did it again!" The fox grinned and replied,

"Yes you did; now go catch yours." Corva was about to ask what he meant when the fox quickly snatched the rabbit and trotted into the undergrowth with another smug smile. She sighed and thought, 'Well that's great', and turned to hunt again. She picked out another rabbit and repeated the process of the hunt. Again, Corva was within feet of the rabbit that was completely unaware of her presence. She sprang again and chased it a few feet pinning it down, then ended it. Corva grinned, satisfied, and carried her breakfast back to the clearing to eat.

When she entered, Corva saw the fox licking his lips and still grinning. She set her catch down and this time, put a protective paw over it. The fox noticed and laughed a little, then said,

"In my defense, it's my first time having a student and I'm elderly." The fox added another sheepish grin. Corva couldn't help but laughing before lying down to eat.

After she had finished eating, Corva turned her head towards the fox and asked,

"So what is it today?" The fox stood up and replied,

"Field medicine; it comes in handy when you're not near a set of herbs." He turned and walked out of the clearing with Corva in tow. They traveled to a small field dotted with trees and other shrubbery. Then the lesson began.

"You probably already know that moss and water are essential to cleaning out wounds. The next step is knowing what other plants you can use." The fox pointed with a paw to a short, fuzzy plant with round oval leaves.

"This is called Clover Fur. You can use it if you can't find moss." Next, he pointed to a thick-stemmed sprout and added,

"That's an Aguavi. The stem breaks easily to reveal a large supply of water. It may be used to rinse wounds." Corva nodded and listened to the fox's descriptions of each plant. Finally, he pointed towards a sapling with tiny leaves all over it.

"And that's a Poppy tree. The leaves have the same numbing effects of poppy seeds." Corva grinned a little at the plants she never knew existed, and said,

"I never even heard of these in my mother's lessons!" The fox nodded and replied,

"That's because they are a little less common than moss and poppy seeds, but work the same." He paused, then added,

"I'll show you more later. Now, we have to visit someone." With that, he turned and walked off towards the other side of the field. Corva decided not to question and trotted off after him. Wonder who it could be? she thought.

Chapter Six: The Word of the Eagle

The fox led Corva in silence with a serious look on his face. They walked over the field and veered towards a giant dead oak tree on the other side. The fox motioned for Corva to stop and wait while he went on ahead. She squinted her eyes to see, but on the ground, a thick layer of mist shrouded it from view. All she could see were the haunting arms of the tree reaching up to the afternoon sun.

The fox walked further ahead to the tree. He put his front paws on its ancient trunk, and used one to tap it. The tree was hollow on the inside for most of the way, so the knocks echoed up to the branches. The fox backed up a few paces and looked up through the mist. He heard a sound of a branch creaking under the force of something jumping down off of it. A large shape was descending down into the mist.

Corva watched anxiously as a blurry figure began to descend from the tree. She pawed the ground anxiously. 'Should I go up there?' ,she thought to herself. Corva sat down to wait, when finally she heard an unfamiliar voice say,

"Come forth, hatchlin'." Corva jumped in surprise. She stood up and slowly headed towards the voice. She picked out the fox's red fur and sat by him, then looked towards the shape. Corva started at the bottom; it had golden-scaled feet tipped with long ebony talons. She continued to raise her gaze as the golden scales gave way to snow white feathers. They too turned into a murky and bronze brown. She looked up further, her head now tilted back, until she saw an ivory patch of feathers, most likely its head. She could see its long curved beak which was a harvest yellow. Corva finally noticed the eyes sizing her up as well; they were a cloudy grey with almost no pupil. It's blind! ,she realized. Then it spoke again, its voice rumbling through her,

"Who be you?" Corva swallowed nervously, but a nudge from the fox urged her to reply.

"I am Corva; a wolf and the fox's apprentice." She fidgeted slightly as the the bird, and eagle, took a deep breath. Then it stretched its massive wings and turned to the fox;

"Ye be training a howler, but not ye brethren?" It was the fox's turn to fidget, but Corva nudged him with her shoulder. The fox hesitated, then replied,

"I searched for another of my kind to train, but they all seemed to have left the marsh, Ra' Kan." It was the first time Corva had heard the bird's name, and she recognized it from her lessons with her grandfather Ancio. Ra' Kan's full name was 'Tir Ra' Kan Eul'. The name translated to 'Keeper of wind and storm' in the Old language. Her breath caught some as she realized she was talking to one of the ancients of lore as the eagle spoke again,

"It be so." Ra' Kan paused for a few seconds as it took another massive breath, turning to Corva. She could now tell it was scenting around it. He had to since he was unable to see his surroundings.

"Then I gift ye insight 'nd kismet in ye studies then. 'Nd for ye, Fox, think 'fore, nay aft'." The fox nodded and replied,

"Of course, Ra' Kan. Never again." The eagle stretched his massive wings again, then brought them down, sending a strong gust of wind away from him as he began to lift up. The fox put a paw in front of Corva, making her back up some to avoid being blown away. Ra' Kan rose up into the sky, landing with a creak in the oak tree again. Once he had landed, a distant echo of thunder radiated towards the two.

"Best to head back then." The two quickly returned to the den, and settled down for the night under the stars. Corva fell asleep with a strange feeling of uneasiness, but blamed it on the eagle's unsettling nature. Little did she know that tomorrow, her whole life would be turned up-side down again.

Chapter Seven: Again

Once again her nightmare returned, but it was different. She was running in a barren grey field scattered with dead willows waving around like ghosts under a full moon's glow. Corva ran and ran until she bumped into a hulking black figure. She caught her breath and looked up; it was Noito. He was glaring down at her with cold and hate-filled eyes. Corva was once again frozen to the spot. He lowered his head closer and hissed in her ear,

"Tridora; you shall pay..." Corva could only shake and whimper in fright as he raised his head back up. An evil smug smile began to spread across his muzzle, revealing his razor-sharp ivory fangs. He slapped her across the muzzle with a massive black paw, knocking her to the ground. She curled up instinctively into a ball as he spoke again.

"Covarde. I knew keeping a runt around would be useless." He quickly lost the grin as Corva peeked her head up from under her paws. Noito snickered ominously. Corva slowly lowered her paws away from her face, exposing her neck. That was a mistake. He snarled and snapped his head down towards her, wrapping his jaws around her neck. She screamed, but it was over.

She awoke with the same panicky feeling as before. Corva jumped to her paws, panting, and spun around to look about her. It was still dark, but not long before madrugada. She steadied her breathing and curled back up to wait for the sun. Corva would've fallen asleep again had she not heard something.

It was distant at first; splashes and shouts of excitement drawing nearer every second. She stood up slowly, ears fully perked. Now she could hear exuberant yips and barks; wolf? No; dog. Corva's eyes widened as her first birthday flashed through her mind again. She knew those sounds. Corva practically jumped on the Fox to wake him up. He stirred slowly and asked sleepily,

"Five more minutes...." As he stretched and started to fall back to sleep. The sounds got closer and were now joined by panting and the sound of footsteps. She couldn't take it any more and bent her head down and nipped the Fox's tail. That got him up; he jumped to his paws and whipped his head towards Corva, ready to scold her when his ears picked up the sounds as well. He turned towards them to hear them more and whispered a single word,

"Run." Corva didn't need to be told twice as she spun on her heel and sprinted away through the trees. The fox was close behind her, but started to lag some. She slowed her pace until she was level with him, but in between pants he said,

"Don't wait for me, go! NOW!" He nipped her side and Corva reluctantly raced ahead. By now she could see the figures of the dogs and their handlers racing towards them. Corva sprinted on in sheer terror, but not fast enough.

A yelp behind her made her turn her head to see a large Weimaraner snatching the fox up by the shoulders and skidding to a stop before racing back to the humans. Corva was about to run after it but the fox saw her and yelled back,

"GO!" Right before the Weimaraner shook him vigorously from side to side, leaving him hanging limp from its jaws. Corva sped up again, following her teacher's last direction. She soon couldn't see anymore as tears started to race down her face as she stumbled over branches and out-stretched tree roots.

Corva didn't even notice the hulking Mastiff that had caught up beside her. It bent its massive head down and rammed it into her side. Corva stumbled and rolled into the roots of a willow tree. The Mastiff slowed and trotted back after the Weimaraner.

Corva tried to get up again, but a large muddy paw slammed down on her shoulder, pinning her down. She didn't even try to fight. She had nothing now, not even someone to talk to. Corva slowly raised her head to look up at her assailant and noticed it was a Wolf. It wore a strange bright band around its neck like the other two did. She noticed it was smaller than the other two dogs too as it watched her intently. Corva looked up at its face which appeared to be sad and remorseful. It glanced back in the direction of the other two dogs and waited for them to run out of earshot, then bent its head down and whispered in her ear,

"Eu vou dicir que fuxiu." Then it raised its head again, giving her another saddened look before chomping down on her leg, snapping it instantly. She yelped in pain as it released her and ran after its companions. Corva could only watch in confusion as her attacker and savior ran off. She couldn't look at her leg, not now, as the wolf's words echoed around her head along with the Fox's. Corva curled up as tightly as she could, her shoulders and side shaking.

Corva was alone.....again.

Chapter 8: Farewells

Corva lay under that tree for that day, not caring at all about herself. She had nothing now, and it seemed like just when she had a friend or a wonderful family, they were taken away. It wasn't fair.

That evening she was about to fall asleep when she was nearly blown out from under the tree by a humongous gust of air. She looked up to see a large figure descending towards her. Corva realized it was the bird she had talked to before; Ra' Kan. She watched as he landed and folded his wings, then walked towards her. He took a deep breath, then spoke in his ancient voice,

"What ye gotten into now, hatchlin'?" His voice sounded like it came from the Earth itself. Corva closed her eyes and sighed, then decided to go ahead and reply,

"Hunters came...and...took the fox..." She struggled to keep her voice from shaking as she waited for the eagle to process this. He took another deep breath, then outstretched a wing. The soft feathertips brushed Corva's head as she fought to keep her emotions down. Ra' Kan sighed sadly and opened his beak to speak, but closed it again with a soft click. He folded his wing and stood there for a few moments.

Corva sighed as well and let her head fall down against the tree roots. She closed her eyes and tried to go to sleep. It would've come if the fear her nightmares brought didn't push it away. Corva opened her eyes again and glanced up at the eagle. He was looking, or had his head tilted, to the ground thinking. Corva picked her head up and asked,

"Are you just going to sit there?" Her tone was a little more harsh than needed, but she continued,

"I just lost my only friend ever since my family and you're just sitting there?" She took several deep breaths and lowered her head back down. Ra' Kan straightened up and turned towards her. Surprisingly he wasn't angry, but rather calm.

"Best be headin' away from 'ere. Aft'r all, you 'ave nothin' left in this place." He lifted his head to the sky, muttering something. A few seconds later it started to rain. He glanced back at Corva, then stretched out his wings. With a giant gust of air, he took off back towards his oak tree. Corva closed her eyes against the wind and waited until she couldn't hear anything but the regular marsh sounds. She figured it would be better if she did leave, but first, she had to take care of her leg.

Corva took a deep breath and used her good back leg and her front legs to stand up, bracing her right side against the tree. Gritting her teeth against the pain, she picked up her left leg off of the ground and set off back towards the den where the healing supplies were. The journey seemed like it took ages. She limped past the puddles she splashed through, the paw prints stamped in the muddy ground, and the tree roots she tripped over. The rain made it even worse as it pelted down.

She trudged on for a while longer, then after what seemed like years she arrived at the clearing. Corva limped to the herb stash and reached down to pick up poppy seeds, moss, water, a sturdy branch, and a long bendable willow vine. She dragged the supplies out into the middle of the now muddly clearing with the rain still coming down. Corva unwrapped the leaf parcel which contained the tiny poppy seeds. She chewed a small amount of them to help numb the pain before she started treatment. Corva gently nudged her leg to tell whether or not she could feel anything. The poppy seeds had worked and her leg was numb.

She picked up the moss and dabbed at the area to clean it off, then let the rain rinse it. Next, Corva straightned her leg as best she could so it would heal straight. She then took the branch and vine to use as a splint. Corva placed the branch parallel to her leg, then used the vine to secure it. She wrapped it around several times before twisting the ends together and tucking them under the wrapped part to keep the vine from slipping off. Corva made sure it was secure before heading towards the den. She poked her head in to make sure she wasn't leaving anything. Corva glanced down at her neck to make sure she had her talisman necklace on, then double-checked the den and the clearing. She found nothing. Now she could leave.

Corva limped off in no direction in particular, only wanting to leave. She traveled for a long time until she came to the edge of the marsh. Corva stopped and turned to face it. She took a deep breath and tilted her head towards the rain, up, and howled. Eu deixo en paz, eu deixo na tristeza, eu me lembro deste local, ata mañá, e moito. She lowered her head slowly as the rain started to subside, now only a light sprinkle. Corva sighed and turned back around, and set off with a rainbow behind her.

She could start again.


Tell me if you guys like it! Here's the translations for the Galician words:
The pronunciations are just the ones for the story, not for the real words.

Antigo (an-TEE-go)- ancient
Medica (MEH-dee-ca)- variation of medico, which means medicine/healer
Sabio (SAH-bee-oh)- wise
doce (DOH-chay)- sweet
Falico (fah-LEE-coh)- variation of falcón, which means hawk
Karvo (CAR-voh)- variation of corvo, which means raven/crow, but raven in this case
Noito (noh-EE-toh)- night
Pardal (par-DALL)- sparrow/robin, but robin in this case
Corva (cor-VAH)- variation of corvo which means crow or raven, crow in this case
Diamanta (dee-ah-MON- tah)- variation of diamante which means diamond
Rapida (rap-EE-dah)- variation of rápido which means swift
Ancio (AHN-see-oh)- variation of ancián, which means elder
Forte (FOR-teh)- strong

Words from Chapter 1

Loita (lo-EE-tah)-fight or struggle
Pedra da Folla Roxa (PEH-dra-dah-FOH-ya-ROK-za)- Purple Leaf Stone
Pedra do Sol Amarelo (PEH-dra-doh-SOHL-om-ah-RAY-loh)-Yellow Sun Stone
Orballo Luar (or-BUY-yo-LOO-ar)-Moonlight Dew
Alma (ALL-mah)-soul/spirit
Chamada (chah-MAH-dah)-calling/specialty

Words from Chapter 2

Encanto da Lúa (en-CON-toh-dah-LOO-ah)- Moon Charm
Narcisos (nar-SEE-sos)- Daffodils
Papoilas (pahp-oh-EE-lahs)- poppies
Regalos (ray-GAH-los)- gifts/presents
Lago (LAH-go)- lake
Augano (ah-GWAN-oh)- variation of auga, which means water

Words from Chapter 3

Tridora (tree-DO-rah)- variation of trador, which means traitor
Está condenado (es-TAH-cone-den-AH-tho)- 'You're doomed'
Non (none {long 'o'})- no
Non é nada (none-AY-NAH-dah)- It's nothing
Lapė (la-PEH)- Lithuanian for fox
Eu adoro (eh-OO-ah-DOR-oh)- I'd love to

Words from Chapter 4

Neophyte (NEE-oh-fite)- (this is an English word) apprentice/pupil

Sinto Moito (SEEN-toh-mo-EE-toh)- I'm sorry
Boa noite (BOH-ah-no-EE-teh)- goodnight

Words from Chapter 7

Covarde (co-VAR-deh)- coward
madrugada (mah-droo-GAH-dah)- dawn
Eu vou dicir que fuxiu- I'll tell them you ran away (don't put it in the translator; it will give you something different than what I put in)

Words from Chapter 8

Eu deixo en paz, eu deixo na tristeza, eu me lembro deste local, ata mañá, e moito- I leave in peace, I leave in sorrow, I will remember this place, forever and far (traditional farewell from Corva's family)
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PostSubject: Re: Crøw's Støry: Liƒe øf †he Willøw Wølf (Chapter 8 is up!)   Thu Aug 05, 2010 3:15 am

Wow it was long but in the end it was worth reading.
It was in-depth and original, and I do believe I saw some words influenced by the warriors series, I believe?
Very well done, Crow!

"Of all the thins that I have lost
......I miss my mind the most."
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PostSubject: Re: Crøw's Støry: Liƒe øf †he Willøw Wølf (Chapter 8 is up!)   Fri Aug 06, 2010 4:14 pm

It was awesome Crow - I read it to the end and it kept me content all the way through. Well done!
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PostSubject: Re: Crøw's Støry: Liƒe øf †he Willøw Wølf (Chapter 8 is up!)   Mon Aug 09, 2010 1:49 am

Thanks you two! What do you mean Edwyn? I've barely even read the Warriors series lol
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PostSubject: Re: Crøw's Støry: Liƒe øf †he Willøw Wølf (Chapter 8 is up!)   Mon Aug 09, 2010 7:03 pm

Really? I guess that must have been a coincidence then.
Great Story nonetheless!

"Of all the thins that I have lost
......I miss my mind the most."
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PostSubject: Re: Crøw's Støry: Liƒe øf †he Willøw Wølf (Chapter 8 is up!)   Fri Aug 13, 2010 7:57 pm

Thanks again Edwyn! I'm thinking of going back and re-writing it.
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