Flashes of Yellow - Chapter 2

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Flashes of Yellow

by silbernefuchs

Libraries: Fantasy, OriginalFiction

Published on / 5 Chapter(s) / 0 Review(s)

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Originally posted to DeviantArt. Now posted here now that Aedon has had his import uploaded. Training entries for Aedon: https://www.paperdemon.com/app/g/dracostryx/character/2621

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Chapter 2, Moving Forward [Tier 2: Confidence]

Aedon stared at his mother, who was outside the nest and standing several yards away, holding a raw, tasty piece of meat in her beak, waiting for him expectantly. The baby raptor was astonished! Why was his mother acting like this? She'd always brought food to him, and now she'd seemed to have stopped altogether! He let out a series of unhappy cries, opening his mouth as wide as it would go, and showing off tiny little teeth. Maybe if he made it wide enough and appealing enough, she'd relent and give him his food.
Rheyn did not move an inch, save to wiggle the meat in an enticing way, trying to coax him into getting up and and out of the nest. He was now six weeks old and ready to start putting his legs to good use by learning how to walk, and that was today's lesson. The meat was his reward, but only if he'd figure it out what she wanted him to do. So brown corva and yellow raptor simply eyed each other across the stretch of packed dirt and over the tangled branches that made up the nest.
Aedon cried again, and began flapping his wings, tiny talons seemingly trying to scratch at the air as if they could help him get fed, but it was no use. The meat remained within sight and out of reach. What was he supposed to do now? Another bawl. This just wasn't fair, and his complaints turned into pitiful, impotent abuses that he hurled at his patient mother, who simply took it all in stride as just one aspect of parenthood. Once his tantrums were over, she dropped the meat at her feet, made encouraging sounds to persuade him to come closer, then picked it up and held it out again.
Frustrated and now quite hungry, Aedon stretched his head and neck forward, as if he thought it was possible for him to reach all the way and snatch his meal from his mother's beak, but, like his other attempts, this one also ended up in failure. It didn't stop him, though, and again he stretched out, trying oh so hard to just grab the meat that his little belly was aching for. Instead of food, though, he only ended up falling forward. This caused him to squall again, because he'd fallen on a particularly poky twig, and now he was sore as well as angry and hungry. When was this going to end?
Rheyn, sensing that her adopted son was having some difficulty in his lessons, stepped forward a little bit, stretched her neck out just a touch, and cooed at him, placating and encouraging him at the same time. He could do this. He just needed to learn that food wasn't always going to be dropped in his metaphorical lap whenever it was time for his mother or his father, the silver-brown corva Rhuuk, to feed him.
He wailed. He flapped. He stretched forward and fell. Again and again, until he was at the rim of the nest. Rheyn cooed again, wiggling the meat and sending a couple drops of blood to fall off it.
You can do this, she seemed to say. Just keep trying.
But Aedon started protesting again against what he thought was his mother being completely unfair to him, and in his rage the tiny hatchling inadvertently stumbled, tottered, and then tumbled up, over and out of the nest, causing him to let out an ear-piercing scream. Aedon cried and cried, and felt his mother's beak against his body, hushing him⸺
⸺and pressing up against him from under his tail, trying to get him to stand up on his legs. He was too surprised by this to even move, and he stood there, wobbly, trying to figure out what he was doing. He ... was upright! And then he fell down yet again, with Rheyn there to prod him into getting upright.
Shakily, Aedon stood in place, barely breathing, as if afraid that he'd fall once again. He wiggled a little, and his tail went up and down, instinctively acting as a counterbalance to keep him up on his feet. The little yellow raptor looked up at his mother expectantly. What was she going to do?
Give him a morsel of meat, apparently, and greedily he snatched it from her beak, not allowing her time to even open it first. Aedon let out little growls as he bolted it down, then opened his mouth once again, wanting more. He really, really wanted his meal!
But the lesson was only half over: first he needed to get out of the nest and onto his feet. The other half involved using them for something other than preventing him from taking a tumble. She picked up the rest of the meat, stepped back a little, and held it out at Aedon's eye level. If he'd learned anything from his fall out of the nest, he'd figure out that moving around got him food.
Baby stryx eyed his mother, eyed the meat, leaned forward now that his food was much closer this time, and in his effort to get to it, took a step. Then another. And another. He tottered slightly as he did so, but at last he was beginning to catch on, and Rheyn allowed him to take a bite out of the meat chunk before stepping back a little more, so that Aedon would be forced to take yet more steps.
Little by little, the tiny raptor hatching was learning what would one day become one of his most important skills: walking.
Word count: 939
Wordcount: +19
Training: +2
Personal art: +3
Total: +24 AP


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