(This story is related to "Suddendusk & Quick Fang's Recognition" - see listing for more related stories.)
Quick Fang grunted with effort as she shoved a heavy shagback fur into a small alcove in the storage dens beneath Mother Tree. She had cleared the small nook of the baskets of web-silked meat earlier that night, relocating the stored food to different alcoves. Now, with the addition of a few furs, it was a cozy little place for a midnight nap. The white-haired huntress had found herself needing a nap some nights now that her stomach was well-rounded and heavy with her unborn cub, but it was so very hard to find a private, quiet place to take that nap alone. Her life was full of well-meaning family and solicitous friends constantly under foot. She sniffed a little in irritation at the memory of all that commotion.
She crawled into her little nest to try it on for size. It fit her loosely-curled body perfectly but still left a bit of room to shift. She nodded to herself in satisfaction as she wriggled herself into a more comfortable position. The furs lining the walls and floor of her nook captured her body heat and filled her nose with the pleasant scent of warm leather. Quick Fang closed her blue eyes and rested her hands on the swell of her belly. The warmth and quiet quickly lulled her into a doze.
A sharp jab beneath her hand brought her back to awareness. She grinned and pushed back against the small lump raised by the cub’s foot. She was rewarded with another powerful kick. She moved her hand a little lower and drummed her fingers. She felt the cub shift and kick her hand again. Quick Fang laughed. She loved it when the cub was feisty.
**Impatient, little thumper? Soon we meet,** she sent to the cub. Then she gasped as her unborn child stretched inside her, shoving on her pelvis and her ribs at the same time. **Oof. Cramped. Lots of room in one more season.** Quick Fang accompanied her few words with images of herself and Suddendusk riding wolves through the forest alongside a third wolf with an indistinct elven rider. She had been sending that image to her child for months. It always seemed to calm the cub and ease the incessant bedtime kicking.
Quick Fang felt a faint tickle in her mind, as if someone were trying to send to her from a long distance. She sat up suddenly and nearly smacked her head on the low ceiling of her alcove. Hugging her belly, she sent the image again. She felt the tickle again.
Her thin lips curled into a toothy grin. Soon, maybe even in just a few more days, she and her Recognized would know the cub’s soulname. With that name would come knowledge of whether she carried a girl or a boy cub. She scooted out of alcove to go in search of Suddendusk. He would want to know about this new development. Quick Fang glanced back at the little fur-lined nook and promised herself more naps.