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Post  Koa on Tue May 19, 2015 11:45 pm



I WAS TOLD BY MY ELDER that the sky above the Malá Sopka den was always a fair blue, untouched by the likes of clouds. And when the wind died down and when all the pack members went to hunt or go on the lookout, all that could be heard was silence. It was not an eerie silence, but rather, a peaceful silence. When a member of our pack died, I was told that everyone would leave the body and would muster here, not in grief, but in celebration of one's life. And then the pack would move on, while, remembering their fallen comrade, would not dwell upon them. The den has always been a symbol of comfort. It was comfort to my elders, and comfort to me when I was a pup. It was also a symbol of life, and continues to be to this day. So while we die in whatever ways nature has planned -- or not planned -- for us, we are succeeded by those who are born by nature. Though they too will die by nature, they are young yet, and the purpose of the pack is to protect them, so that nature may not greet them again so soon. For, they are our future, and a longer present is a better present, and thereafter ensures a better future.

As I unwittingly cast aside my attention to tend to a butterfly, my elder started to part her knowledge of the Malá Sopka Den unto me. I regret my childish naiveté so; perhaps, had I listened more closely, I would have picked up all the details and history of the den. And, perhaps, just one detail I missed might have led to the success of our expedition. It's impossible to know. But not impossible to wonder and to dwell. Back then as a pup, I never craved knowledge. In fact, I was the least promising and least motivated of the bunch. Now, what knowledge I so hastily threw away, I seek so greatly. The hindsight of age is great. If you are struggling to pay attention like I did in my younger years, at least carry this away with you -- start paying attention, for one day you may miss the information that you will seek, and once that revelation comes upon you, you will the realize you haven't the time to go back and gain what you have lost...

Nevermind my rambling. What I can remember from my elder's recollection of Malá Sopka history is this -- that, the old wolf Maláka, was believed to have been its first settler. Granted, that wasn't likely his original name, but wolves down the line have probably altered his name so that it sounded similar to our den name. It was said that Maláka had been so battered by the wind in the neighboring area, that once the peaceful silence greeted him in Malá Sopka, he decided to settle there. He brought with him his mate, Attva, and his two daughters, Yve and Griska. Soon, Yve and Griska were courted by suitors, and settled elsewhere within the borderlands. Two other packs came to the area and around the outskirts of this overarching territory, and eventually wolves as a whole came to settle the larger, southern end of Primorsky Krai. Maláka was well-respected, but was chiefly possessive over his land. This fierce belief of possession ultimately brewed conflict between Maláka and his equally fierce daughter, Yve, who pushed the limits of her own territory frequently onto his. Frustrated by her and her mate's constant enroachment, he once chased her away when she pushed the limits once too far. Unfortunately, he pursued her too ferverently, and she met her end at a nearby gorge, to which he had accidentally chased her off. At the sight of his mate's fall, Wilgrund, her mate, lunged at Maláka, only to join his mate in the gorge. Maláka's swiftness kept him safe, but ultimately brought upon him much pain. For, if he had been slower or weaker, he might have given up in the middle of the chase and his daughter and her mate might have not met their deaths at all. Or, at least, that is what my elder theorized. Griska, at the news of the tragedy, fled with her mate out of vicinity, for fear that she might meet the same end. To be fair, Griska was less defiant than that of her sister, so her demeanor would have likely kept her safe, anyway.

Still, amidst all of the scandal and death, Maláka led the wolves of the Malá Sopka Den to prosperity. He grew more humble in the wake of the tragedy, and welcomed two unrelated wolves into his pack. He and Attva had eight more children over a period of four more years, and these children too were courted and were whisked away into family life in their own territories. It is said that those born in Malá Sopka are born with Maláka's humbleness, his swiftness, and his hospitality. Perhaps that is true, but I'd argue that these qualities are not so eternal in one's lifetime. Swiftness, especially, fades with age, as I am already starting to find out...
The Last Ancient

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