(This story is a part of the "Wrapstuffed Tribemembers are Healed and Rejoin the Tribe" and the "Newt emerges from wrapstuff, and Aftermath" storylines -- see listings for related stories.)
**Ness?** He waited for an answer. But there was no answer.
Just a moment before, a heartbeat before he had closed his eyes this word had been so full of life and so full of his beloved brother, Glint. It had held all Glint’s little secrets, all his open and hidden traits, it had been him. It had almost been too much to bear for little Newt.
**Ness?** Again. No answer. No, worse than no answer. Emptiness.
It had been so full, this little word. It had been bursting with meaning and love and care. Now it was just a word. Just an empty little word. Just a cruel empty little word.
**Brother?** he tried it again. Maybe this worked better. He couldn't send the empty secret name again. It just broke his heart.
"Newt." A soft gentle voice reached him. "Newt, come in please. You'll get sick sitting here in the rain."
He hadn't even noticed that it had started to rain, but now someone told him so he felt the wetness on his skin. Newt turned his head to see who was talking to him. The soft features, the long brown hair hidden under the hood, the soulful eyes looking down on him with so much love and care.
Greenweave smiled down at him and tried to hide the worry he was feeling. Silently, he sat down next to his little foster cub. The rain wasn't heavy. It was a nice, gentle summer rain, so there was no need to press and urge the little one to go back to the den.
The fisher wraped his cloak around the small body when he sat down and rubbed Newt's arm. Newt leaned into the warm body next to him. He knew this wasn't Glint. He knew that Glint had smelt slightly different. He knew that if this was Glint, the word wouldn't be empty, but still he liked the idea that it could be him. Just a moment he wanted to believe it.
But still Newt knew that it was Greenwave, his brother's son. Greenweave, who, along with his lifemate Cloudfern, had taken him in. Both cared for him and he had not made it easy for them so far. That Newt knew all too well.
The lad hadn't realized how cold he was until Greenweave's body warmed him up. This warm feeling and the patience the almost strange elf beamed with brought tears to his eyes, and before he realized it a single one rolled over his cheek.
Tenderly it was wiped away and Newt expected the usual soothing words everyone seemed to say when he started to cry, but the fisher didn’t say them. Greenweave just held him closer, and when Newt looked up he saw that Greenweave’s eyes were wet as well.
The cub tried to get closer to his new family, he really did. Since Farscout had gone two days before, it was harder though, and he felt even lonelier. It hurt the young one that he couldn't open up more to the son of his brother some more. His cousin had tried to make him promise to try his best while he was away, but the first thing he had done was climb out of Beetle's window and try to get away.
Everyone tried their best to make Newt feel at home. Beetle, Otter, Snowfall and Kestrel, they all tried to be there for him, but sometimes Newt couldn't help but cry when he was reminded painfully of all his lost tribemates. He had pushed it all away as much as he could but now it was welling up again.
The tears didn't stop, they ran over his face in silence. Painful, empty silence. Almost as empty as this little word was now.
"I can't give it back!" The cub's shaking voice broke the silence. Greenweave was stunned for a moment but didn't interrupt him. "I wanted to go for my Long Walk as soon as they released me from wrapstuff and find my own soul name so I can give it to my brother." He sniffed. "It's not right to know his and he'll never learn mine now! That's not fair!"
The brown-haired elf made a shushing sound and ran his slender fingers through the stubborn white hair. "My father loved you,” he said. “And he never would have asked for it. All he wanted was to see you again,” he whispered, his lips against his forehead.
Newt's heart ached when he realised how much this gesture reminded him of Glint. Greenweave was so much like him, and yet he wasn't.
"He visited you almost every day and I sat at his side and listened to the stories he told. I was eager to meet you too. First as my bigger brother, then as my little brother, then as my son." he explained tenderly. "You have been a part of my life even before you knew me."
Translucent eyes looked at him. He had heard this before from others but not from Greenweave himself. The soft eyes of the fisher looked over his head somewhere else, far away to a place Newt didn't know. He wondered if Greenweave missed Glint as much as he missed him, and if he knew how much there had been in Glint, and if his brother had changed a lot.
"We should get in now." Greenweave cut off Newt's unfinished thoughts. "Cloudfern will be mad with us if we both catch a cold in the summer rain." When he stood up he released the cub from his embrace and held his hand out to him to lead him home.
Hesitantly but then firmly Newt's pale hand took Greenweave's. "When I find my soulname," Newt said in a low voice. "Will it fill the emptiness my brother's name left?"
Greenweave stopped and squeezed the little hand in his gently. It occurred to him how cruel and wonderful it had been of his father to give Newt this present, and how painful it must feel to lose a soul without knowing your own yet.
"I fear nothing ever can fill this emptiness, Newt," he said in a serious but soft voice. "But other things, new things, will be there to soothe the empty feeling." Greenweave gave him a hopeful smile. "Maybe the love and care Cloudfern I hold for you could be the first new thing?"
Newt bit on his pale lip, looking up to the gentle, brown eyes, showing so much love and warmth for him that he didn't even shiver in the rain. He thought about it, thought hard, and then Greenweave could see the first smile on Newt's face that reached his eyes.