Story for the Day: A Legacy Left Pt.4

Once the sniffles family were well settled with their newfound Mivaala, the matter of their residence had come into question. They were given comfortable room near the basking fires of the inner sanctuary and were given a choice of any of the zhaarazta skins they might like to furnish their home, but another suggestion was soon presented them that made them consider having a dwelling beyond the protection of the temple: a small daarani tree that uprooted during the last rains season had been recently replanted. It was in tolerable condition with only a few boughs missing to recommend the tumult it had undergone, but the trunk had been so cracked and thrashed about that it was on the point of being cloven entirely. With some machination and contrivance, it could be hollowed out and furnished into a suitable home for the new arrivals. The only question of concern was that the tree must be planted near the shore to gain its nourishment and so far a distance was the mill to the coast that an element of peril might entering into every day for four such small mice. Everyone as a matter of course would assist them, either by way of decorating their home, planting it firmly into the ground, pruning the wayward boughs, and conveying them to the mill and back again every day,  but the sniffles family would not concede: to make such an immense fuss on their behalf could not be borne and they therefore declined the offer, resolute to remain in the temple where they might be safe and comfortable and untroublesome to their new friends. Leraa entreated them to reconsider, but their decision was stout and they could not be deterred.
                They spent their evening pleasantly in the temple, listening to the hymns of the bards and sharing their grains between them, and though the family of mice might have been enjoying their newfound felicity and abundance, Kai Linaa could not be so complacent. She sat in her home on the shore with Unghaahi, preparing a small supper of gingered roots, when she looked about her house, considering everything she had gained by her conversion in comparison to the little that her new friends had acquired, sulked and was miserable.
                "Iimon Ghaala Kai Linaa," Unghaahi purred, leaning down and catching her up from behind. "I am aware that you wish for them to have a home as we do, but we must honour their decision."
                "But I know they’re only saying no because they don't want us to do anything for them," rejoined Kai Linaa in a complaining voice.
                Unghaahi simpered and kissed his mate's small pouting lips. "That may be, Ghaala. However, they will always be welcome to our home, and if you would wish to invite them every evening, you may do so if you will feel more at ease with their decision."
                "It won't." She humphed, flouted and folded her arms. A stamp of the foot, a glower of the lip and Kai Linaa was prepared to mope for the remainder of the evening.
                "My brother would be proud of you if he could see you in such a position," Unghaahi laughed.
                Kai Linaa scowled and shrugged. "I don't care."
                "Yes, Ghaala, you do." Unghaahi knelt beside her and placed her hands at her sides. "You tell yourself that you do not care to convince yourself otherwise, but you are unable to lie."
                Kai Linaa opened her mouth to attack him with negations but stopped when she realized that he could not be contradicted.  She clenched her teeth and pouted harder.
                Unghaahi placed his hand around his mate's jaw and gave a gentle press to crush her lips together. "You will harm yourself and remain with that expression," he warned
                "Iduncur," was her muffled reply.
                Unghaahi’s eyes filled with mirthful tears while suppressing a laugh. "Yes, you do."
                They continued in the same style for some time, Kai Linaa determined to win the argument and Unghaahi knowing she was going to lose. She could not win against his impenetrable patience, and though her obstinacy was endearing, it could not last. A few more muffled assertions and the battle had done. It ended with Unghaahi wiping the tears of laughter from his eyes and with Kai Linaa rubbing the pinched blush from her cheeks.
                Unghaahi was inclined to enjoy their meal together, but as he stood from his place to retrieve the plate, he sensed the mischief imminent behind him. A sharp tug on his kansa and he was left with only his cloth to garnish him. "Taking my kansa does not mean you have won, Ghaala," he said, turning to Kai Linaa, who was waving his kilt at him.
                 "No," she said archly, "but I win something else." Her eyes sparkled.
                "You do not need to win to receive Khopra as a reward, Ghaala," Unghaahi growled, prowling toward her.
                Kai Linaa giggled and made a swift gasp for Unghaahi's Phundhosha but her hand was caught, her body was flipped, and she found herself on the her back with Unghaahi’s features looming over hers.
                His nose grazed her ear and he said in a low voice, "Iimon Sedhitsaa ebhaasit anaaton mandaanas."
                A coo at such a vulgar and pleasant phrase, a hard swallow, a wistful sigh, and Kai Linaa had done. She was inclined to lose or win as the case required, and as Unghaahi parted her legs with his knees and removed his cloth, she was wholly disposed to forget the matter of the sniffles family until the following morning.


  1. Domestic bliss? But ah, domestic bliss! They are such a cute couple.


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