Have you done any research into your ancestors? What interesting surprises have you discovered?
“Takai?” Ryuusei looked up from the book he was reading as he addressed his elder. “Are there others like us?”
The old white wolf flicked his ears forward but kept his head on his paws. What do you mean, pup?
The boy closed the book and rolled onto his back. “I mean, wolf demons in hiding. Wondering where the rest of our people are.”
Takai yawned. I cannot say. I suspect if there were others, they would be here.
These ruins are ours. Our ancestors once called this place “home.”
He frowned. “But isn’t that more reason to stay away? This would be the most logical place to come back to.”
The wolf rumbled with laughter. If it meant finding a new pack, they would come here.
“Why are you alive, then?” Ryuusei snarled without thinking.
To care for a reckless young pup who couldn’t sniff out a doe’s trail on a clear day. Takai licked the boy’s face and was rewarded with laughter. Are we not a pack, if small in number?
Ryuusei rubbed the slobber off his face. “Yeah, I suppose you’re right.” He sat cross-legged facing the old wolf now. He didn’t hide his heritage in this place. Black wolf ears protruded through jet black hair, and a similar black-furred tail wagged lazily behind him. “Tell me about them.”
Takai groomed a forepaw as he contemplated how much to tell the boy. They were a proud and powerful race, he said quietly. They mostly kept to their own, though. Occasionally a lower class demon would wander into their territory and challenge them to a fight but the wolves rarely lost.
He looked up at the crumbling walls of their shelter. Once, it had been a home to an Elder. These ruins were the main city of the Elders and the Central tribe. Every few decades, there would be a Gathering. All the packs from the Cardinal Tribes would come and mingle. Pups would meet for the first time, mates would be found, new packs would form. It was always a time of growth. It was also a time to share information.
At one such Gathering, news of Prophecy came to the Elders. Takai looked Ryuusei in the eyes as he continued. Your ancestors had borne witness to the Prophecy that would signify the end of their own race. Rei led his pack with loyalty. His mate, Mayumi, was well respected among the packs of her tribe. They encountered an aged wolf who could no longer take the form you take now.
“Like you?” The boy wasn’t being intentionally rude, he was just asking for clarification.
Takai dipped his head. Yes pup, like me. Ryuusei hung his head, appropriately abashed. This Old One became possessed before she returned to Paradise. She spoke words that would come to signal the Decline.
“She told them to my ancestors?” The awe in his voice made Takai chuckle.
It was not a light burden. It was several years before the Gathering. They had to carry it all that time. The Elders were concerned at the time, but as the generations passed, it faded from their memory. Only two of the tribes kept their oath to pass it on. By the time your grandmother was born, it was mere legend.
“What was the Prophecy?” Ryuusei’s eyes were wide.
Takai sighed and rested his head on his paws again. I never heard it. All I know is that your mother’s birth fulfilled part of it. He tilted his head to one side. She resembled her ancestral grandmother though. A rare silver fur.
The boy looked at the ruins around him with new perspective. “So this is all because she was born?”
Who can say? Takai yawned again and resettled his head. This may have happened even if she hadn’t been born. But if she hadn’t, then neither would you.
Ryuusei stared at the book in his hands for several quiet moments. Takai wondered what was going through the boy’s head. One day he would ask about his father and the role that man had played in all of this. Takai hoped to put that day off as long as he could, but Rin had left him an impossible task.
Notes: It is so very late and I am not sure where I am going with this anymore. I wanted to explore some of the lore in my fanfiction story. Ali’s family history is fascinating when tied together with the Prophecy that sets the first story in motion. Takai and Ryuusei are interesting characters I am also still sorting out. Ryuu serves as a foil to Mika in her story, but I didn’t understand him enough to make him robust. Takai is his mentor. Takai is fascinating because he somehow avoided the genocide that wiped out the rest of his race and so he is much older than the other wolf demons in my story. He remembers the time before. But just how much of it, I don’t know. Still trying to figure out where he fits in the grand scheme of things. This is a conversation that happens when Ryuusei is very young, before he twists history to serve his own purposes.
I’ve never personally looked into my own ancestors, but it’s something I’ve been curious about more and more lately with the popularity of the Ancestry DNA and 23&Me programs. I don’t know squat about anyone older than my grandparents. My dad’s parents were first generation Dutch immigrants, so there’s no mystery there, but my maternal lineage is slightly ambiguous. My grandmother doesn’t remember her father, only his last name. One day I’d like to do some digging into that, see what I find.
Well I guess that’s it for me this week. Next week’s prompts will go up Sunday, as is the new usual. Have a great weekend!