The elf in question turned her attention away from the necklace she'd been tending to and toward the entrance to the forge. She didn't have to look at what Cloudfern held in his hand; his stance and the hesitant tone of his voice told her all she needed to know.
"Again?" she asked, though her smile was more sympathetic than annoyed.
Cloudfern stepped inside and took a seat right next to the door-hole, returning Goldspice's smile with a sheepish one of his own. "It's…actually not broken. I just, uhm." He paused and opened his right hand, revealing a silver hair clasp.
It was a hair clasp Goldspice knew well. Very well. She'd tended to it more than once since its making, though it had been made by her mother Ice's hand, not her own. The clasp was shaped like a bird in flight, and though its metal gleam had been somewhat dampened by an oak's age, careful tending had kept it in one piece. Not such a hard task when no one had been allowed to wear it after it had come into Cloudfern's possession. At least not to Goldspice's knowledge.
"You 'just, uhm' what?" Goldspice asked Cloudfern, not above a little gentle teasing. She'd never outright mock him for his attachment to the clasp, of course, but she wouldn't coddle him either. He was her elder after all, not some wayward cub.
Cloudfern gave a one-shoulder shrug and place the hair clasp on a nearby waist-high shelf. "I thought it could do with a looking to. What…what with everything that's happened in the past couple of turns."
That Goldspice chose not to comment. 'The past couple of turns' likely meant 'the return of the Fierce Ones last winter', though neither of them would say that out loud. Without another word Goldspice took the clasp and set to work.
Tending to the clasp took little time. There wasn't much one could do against the marks of time, other than replace all the parts. Goldspice didn't consider that option. It would be as pointless as replacing her mother's half-crescent earrings with new made twins, or in one go replace all the pearls in the bracelet she'd inherited from her grandmother Easysinger. The troll-made knife she'd inherited from her father Riskrunner was different, somewhat, in that it was something to be studied as well. But she could never jeopardize it fully, troll-secrets or no.
Goldspice handed the hair clasp back to Cloudfern, who thanked her with a nod and a smile. His eyes were distant though, focused on the clasp and yet on a vision much further away. "I wish silver preserved scent better. It never smelled like her, not even from the start, yet it was her favorite." He didn't sound sad, only wistful.
Looking at Cloudfern then Goldspice felt a prick of regret that she'd never known his mother Frost outside of shared memories. But most of her was taken up with warmth. Stories weren't the only form memories could take, and as much as Goldspice appreciated the storytellers' work, she also took pride in the part she herself played in keeping the past, and those lost to it, alive.
"Any time you need it seen to, let me know." Goldspice said. It's what she'd always told tribemates who'd come to her with similar errands, and she suspected it was what she'd always be saying. As long as there were knickknacks in her own den she treasured more for their stories than for their shine or usefulness, she knew she'd help other's keep theirs as whole and well as time's fangs would allow.
"Don't drop it on the way back to your den," she added as Cloudfern turned to leave, earning her an eye-roll. "Wouldn't want to have to clean mud off it too."
With that they parted ways and Goldspice returned to tending the necklace. If her smile was a tad more nostalgic than usual as she went about her night, no one was there to comment.