“Shhh… Kayuta,” Arna breathed the Tokota’s name, an airy breath of words sliding out from between her chapped, pink lips, slightly purple from the cold. She was squatted down, both hands out before her. Lying across one of those hands was a long black lead rope, pulled taut from Kayuta’s trying to pull away, to allow Kayuta some distance away from the human, while still allowing Arna some control over her. “Shh,” she breathed again.
They’d traveled for a few hours since Arna had adopted the female, trying to find a place of solitude where the woman could bond with her Tokota. She knew
Arna had gotten word from one of her scouts that there’s been a threatening presence of a pack of coyotes near her elk herd that was situated in the forests of the valley. The pack they’d seen had been quite a large one, depending on numbers to bring down an animal as large as an elk, even if simply just a calf, for calves were even still large and the mothers would be upon them in an instant.
The woman had quickly tacked up Taunerak as her mount, who would not be partaking in today’s hunt. In fact, he wasn’t quite the one for hunting, instead preferring to go out on adventures and journeys. He wasn’t v
Arna woke up just as the sun was starting to crest over the mountains, casting a soft glow over the Kuuk tribe’s camp, precisely the same time she woke up every other day. There’d been a heavy snowfall last night, as she’d felt in the middle of the night as the air became chillier, the wind howling loudly, keeping her awake for a minute or two before she was out like a light, once more. The tribe’s caribou herd should be at the treeline on the opposite end of the Iyerartorpok Forest, and the elk herd would be somewhere deep in the forest or in the valley, but the heavy snowfall may have caused some problems and the
Arna let out a quick, sharp whistle, enticing the two tokotas over. Both were short and squat, legs stubby and thick, unproportionate to their bodies and heads. She didn't quite know how she felt about bringing in tokotas affected by dwarfism into her tribe, but she decided it may be for the best if she did indeed include a few toki pups in her pack. Her decision, however, was made mostly in part to Shideh's intense pleading for a baby toki. She remembered their conversation completely.
"Come on, Arna! Look at that toki!" Shideh had squealed, pointing to a toki walking along with its handler in the town as they strode through, lookin