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The Cub, The Ranger, Her Wolf & Big Trouble (Weapons Training - Attn Lorelai)


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Shadow? the mental call brought nothing but an echoing silence causing Rhya to laugh softly. He’d obviously decided to hide from her again while she was distracted. Golden eyes dropped back to the item that lay across her knees, inspecting it intently. The short bow was a new weapon to her though she’d had it in her possession for some months. Delighted as she had been with her long-wished for sword training, time was limited for adding anything else to her list of classes.


Today, however, it seemed that the sky was clear, its washed out paleness marked with only a few heavy looking clouds, and that had neatly coincided with Rhya having a few hours to spare. Loathe to remain indoors, she’d picked up the bow and some arrows on an impulse, thinking to find some seclusion to try it out by herself. After all, how much damage could she do if nobody was around?


She had set out aimlessly to begin with, walking through the dense forest behind the tree house and eventually heading eastward using an overgrown trail. An hour or so later she’d entered a part of the Stedding that she’d never explored before, the trail giving out onto uneven pastureland, too small to be called a field but large enough to graze a couple of horses on. It seemed an ideal place for practising once she’d spotted several tree stumps, the trunks fallen away at awkward angles, probably during the last storm.


Rhya hadn’t got as far as testing the bow yet though. Instead, she was perched on one of the lower stumps examining the weapon, her fingers smoothing absently back forth along the wood as she admired the workmanship of it. Its four and a half foot length was beautifully made from flexible mountain ash, polished to a high sheen and then bent into a graceful recurve at either end before being strung with hemp. Rhya knew it had a range of about 100 yards but had been warned that it would take a great deal of practice and many months before she could shoot much beyond 25. To begin with, she had to learn to shoot the thing at all. It would certainly be ideal for hunting, though she had no intention of using it to fight. She had sword and daggers for that.


“No time like the present,” she murmured, standing and picking a target between herself and the tree line. She removed an arrow from the quiver at her shoulder, her brow furrowing in concentration and fitted it to the bow. Drawing slowly, the process felt strange and awkward to her and took no small amount of effort.


Her arm muscles were just beginning to protest when she let the arrow fly, the string thrumming loudly and… Rhya watched in disgust as it sailed well wide of the rotting stump and off into the trees. A disgust that quickly changed to frozen horror at the sudden sharp yelp that echoed back towards her!


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  • 9 months later...

Lorelai stretched, lying on the ground as her companion stared at her thoughtfully. She ignored the wolf, enjoying the sun and soft breeze the day offered. She knew why Nightfall was staring at her. Why she was being purposefully quiet. Not that she was usually such a chitter chatter, but the silence definitely felt forced. Closing her eyes, Lorelai took a deep breath, loosening the tension from her shoulders and trying to relax.


~ You don't socialize enough ~


Lorelai sighed. Sometimes Nightfall would get carried away with her motherly advices. It made her wonder if she ever had cubs. She tried asking once but Nightfall never responded. She sensed some pained memories from that direction. It was one of those things Lorelai figured she shouldn't pry about, so she never did again. That didn't mean, however, that she was going to let the wolf tell her what to do. She refused to crack, despite the constant pestering.


~ Myabe you should... ~


Lorelai's eyes snapped open and she interjected.


~ Enough. If you don't stop with this, Nightfall, so help me... ~


Lorelai's eyes widened as an arrow crossed her vision and passed in Nightfall's direction. It all happened so fast that all she could manage was a step in Nightfall's direction before the arrow flew on, after grazing Nigthfall's flank.


~ Nightfall! ~


~ I'm well, black cub. Go! ~


Lorelai hesitated for a moment, witnessing that Nightfall wasn't losing much blood before spinning around and running in the direction the arrow came from. It didn't take long to find the archer, a scent of curiousness and stubbornness catching her nostrils. She soon discovered the Wolfkin responsible. She didn't suspect it to be an outsider at any point, seeing as the Stedding being exposed seemed unlikely, but she couldn't think of a reason a Wolfkin would do such a foolish thing.


Lorelai was furious. Had the shot been made a few inches to the right, her wolf would be dead. And that was unforgivable. She jumped the unfamiliar Wolfkin, grabbing the bow from her hands and kicking her to the ground with a swing of her leg. "You flaming fool!". She held the bow horizontally over her knee and snapped it in two, letting the pieces fall to the ground. "What in the light were you thinking?!?!" Lorelai shook her head, trying to restrain herself form beating the other woman into a bleeding pulp.






Edited by Nynaeve
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Rhya raised her head cautiously, more than a little dazed from her swift contact with the ground, and watched the furious dark-haired woman before her as one might watch a poisonous snake. She certainly looked incensed enough to do something rash and Rhya’s only comfort was in knowing this was technically no stranger but another of the ‘kin. Hopefully that’ll be enough to make her think twice before trying to kill me. Rhya knew without a doubt that if anyone had shot at her companion, she wouldn’t be inclined to be reasonable either.


“I’m so so sorry!” she exclaimed hastily as she scrambled to her feet a little unsteadily, surreptitiously rubbing her bruised behind. Her face burned with a mixture of shame and shock at what might have happened and she was almost babbling in her rush to get the words out. “I thought I was alone up here. That it’d be safe to practice so far from the village. Is... is your companion badly hurt? Please ... will you pass on my apologies to the wolf?”


Rhya’s gaze dropped briefly to the broken bow lying on the ground and a soft sigh escaped her lips. It was sad to see such a beautiful weapon destroyed but that was the least of her concerns right then. “Perhaps it might be wiser to stick to the sword in future,” she muttered under her breath. “Shadow’s bound to have something to say about me shooting another wolf.”


Bringing her focus back to the other woman, Rhya continued, “If... if I can help at all... I have some herbs and salves with me.” Perhaps she could still make up for her mistake. It had been an accident after all.


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  • 1 month later...

"I’m so so sorry!"


Lorelai ignored the other wolfkin.


~ Nightfall? ~ She asked, feeling tense.


~ All is well, black cub. I rest ~


Lorelai took a deep breath and managed to finally calm down a little. She still felt on edge, though. The idea of losing Nightfall was not one she could bear. She let her body relax, let her thoughts disperse and looked at the woman in front of her, realizing that she was still there.


"I thought I was alone up here. That it'd be safe to practice so far from the village. Is... is your companion badly hurt? Please ... will you pass on my apologies to the wolf? Perhaps it might be wiser to stick to the sword in future." Lorelai was still unable to form words.


"Shadow's bound to have something to say about me shooting another wolf. If... if I can help at all... I have some herbs and salves with me." Silence stretched for a long while before Lorelai finally spoke. "Nightfall is fine, I will take care of her wound myself. As for you..." Lorelai hesitated for a moment but then nodded her head as if deciding that her idea was a good one. "I planned on sending you to an instructor that would teach you to use the bow properly, but I believe it best for me to teach you. After all, I can't let you run around, shooting companions. Other Wolfkin won't be as forthcoming as me."


Lorelai looked up at the sky for a moment. "We'll start tomorrow. I have things that need doing and a wolf that needs tending to. We'll meet here bright and early tomorrow. Don't be late." Lorelai turned around to look for Nightfall.







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