“Snowflake,” her mother spoke softly, trying to coax her daughter to move, “come along. It’s time to leave the river and go to sleep.”
The child ignored the soft sound of her mother’s voice and continued playing. When Snowfall reached out to touch her shoulder, Snowflake whipped her head around and snapped at her mother. “Grrrrrrr,” she growled.
Snowfall had pulled her hand away just in time. She knew what her daughter could be like, and the snapping was not unexpected. But she was the mother, the adult, and Snowflake was going to listen. Moving to stand before her daughter and crouching to where their eyes could meet, Snowfall knew what she needed to do. She was well-versed in wolfish behavior, and while she would prefer to interact with her daughter as an elf, she could, when she had to, be wolf-like herself.
Snowfall made a low sound in the back of her throat, and Snowflake looked up in surprise.
“Grrrrrrr,” was Snowfall’s response. Then she sent, using images instead of words. **Snowflake curled up, sleeping.**
Snowflake tried shaking her head and turning away from her mother. Snowfall was having none of it. “Grrrarrrrrrrr. Rrrrrrr.”
Snowflake knew that her mother meant business, and she reluctantly stood. To her surprise, Snowfall moved quickly and nipped at her daughter — enough to get the point across that Snowflake had better move quickly to her den.
Snowfall laughed to herself. She never liked resorting to her daughter’s antics in order to get her moving, but she also knew from conversations with her lifemate, and from experience, that Snowflake responded better to her when she did. She would keep trying to encourage her daughter’s elfin side, but when Snowflake didn’t respond, Snowfall knew how to handle her.
Following her daughter back to the den, both elves were distracted by another sound, a cub’s growling. Snowflake stopped to look back at her mother, and Snowfall nodded that it was all right. Snowflake got on all fours and began creeping toward the growling sound. A roly poly cub pounced at her, and she caught it and rolled. She growled at the cub, and he growled back, and she laughed, then growled at him again.
After a few moments, Snowfall knew that a bond had sealed between her daughter and the cub. Still, dawn’s early light was growing, and it was time for Snowflake to be in bed. Snowfall yipped a call to her daughter, who turned to look at her, almost as if she had forgotten her mother was there. Snowfall sent an image of Snowflake sleeping, curled up with the growling cub. Snowflake smiled, then stood, hauling her wolf-friend with her.