Big Sister


Johari - lioness cub, daughter of Kiini and Mwaliko.
Kiini - lion, son of King Mzohari and Nyunya.
Kikora - juvenile lioness, pride youth.
Kori - lion, Kopje guard.
Mwaliko - lioness, Kopje huntress.

Kopje Valley - Bottom of the Waterfall Cliff
You come to the bottom of a large cliff. Just above you is a massive promontory jutting out of the side, it sends a shadow across the waterfall. A large torrent of water comes down, creating a large 'lake' at the bottom of the cliff. Many sweet grasses grow on the edge perfect for grazing animals. As you look up the cliff face, you see a small path leading to the promontory and then stretches further along the cliff.

To the [K]opje [V]alley [Climb] up to the Promontory
[E]dge of the [S]avannah

A sparkling and cool lake
You can see the 'end of' a runoff stream.

"I'm alright." Kiini replies, watching the other cat as she settles down close by. He smiles rather warmly, "What about you Mwal?" He asks, letting his own tail slap against the ground now.

Mwaliko nods slightly as she lisitons to Kiini. "That's good.. An I'm fine. No complaints here." She offers while looking to the sleeping cubs.

Sleep? Huh? Kikora, snuggled up against the warm body of Kasjari, is suddenly awake — she doesn't yawn or even transition into it steadily … she just -is-. "Hi!" She calls out to those around her, her ears perked and eyes gleaming. Uh oh … what's on this cub's mind?

"Want to join me?" Kiini offers to Mwaliko, going so far as to pat the ground next to him. As he waits for her to react, his attention is drawn to a noisy cub over by Kasjari. "Hey Kikora."

Mwaliko ears perk as she looks over to Kikora and offers a smile. "Hello Kikora. You sleep good?" She questions softly as she settles down somewhat near Kiini but not right at his side.

Kikora hops up without hesitation, meandering slowly toward the pair of lions without a care in the world … or so it seems. "So …" she starts out innocently enough, her brown eyes sparkling with a hint of mischief in them — and curiosity. "You two are a mommy and a daddy. Did you two get cooties when you hugged to make the cubs?" She has no shame, not because she's blunt, but because she has -no idea- what really constitutes the creation of new little lions.

Kiini watches the lioness, sighing a bit at her choice. Still, when Kikora pipes up, Kiini is overly surprised. "Cooties? Uh, no, no cooties.." Kiini answers, glancing over towards Mwaliko now to see how she reacts.

Mwaliko blinks while she peers at Kikora and ahs faintly while she tilts her head, ears perking forward. "Ah.. No, we didn't get cooties. What gave you that idea Kikora?" She questions, a glance offered to Kiini then back to the cub.

Kikora takes a seat near the pair, her back sloped slightly as she drops her head, eyes boring into the two like a drill. "So you -didn't- get cooties? Well, what was it like when you woke up and your cubs were at your side?" She asks, her voice now lower, almost … suspicious. Something isn't right here, not if what Kori and Kizingo told her are true.

"Great!" Kiini answers with a rather amused grin on his face. "Once you have cubs its great. You get to groom them for the first time, carry them by the scruff, even name them. Its great."

Mwaliko blinks and chuckles softly at this while taking in a faint breath. "When my cubs was born I was rather sick for the first few days of there life. But Kiini is right, it is a great feeling to have seeing them."

"Siiiick?" Kikora asks with a tilt of her head, straightening her back out some and wrinkling her nose. "So cubs make you sick?" She's trying, you've got to hand it to her — Kas' wouldn't tell her and Kori told her a watered-down version, but her questions are still vast and mostly unanswered to her satisfaction. "And you -don't- get cooties when you hug?"

Mwaliko shakes her head. "No, cubs don't make you sick.. I was just sick for some reason or another." This said with a soft tone while smiling to the girl. "An no you don't get cooties when you hug."

Kikora furrows her brows some, giving a looooong look toward Kizingo. "But … Kizingo said that when you hug really long, you get cooties. I like wrestling with Kor and 'Goo, does that mean we'll all get each others' cooties then?" She still frowns, her tail looping around her paws neatly.

Mwaliko ahs faintly and oys a moment, pondering what the males have been telling the girl lately. "No, you won't get cooties from playing, or anything else ok?" She questions softly while lowering her head to nose out at the cub.

Kikora responds kindly to Mwaliko's nosing, her black-ringed ears turning back, but not completely. "So … cooties aren't real, then?" She clenches her teeth together, almost as if saying 'I've been had!', extending the dark-colored claws of one forepaw to knead the earth. "Neat! That means me an' Kor' and 'Goo can all play without … cooties!" She breathes a visible sigh of relief, but wonders why the two big lions lied to her. Oh, well!

Mwaliko shakes her head some. "Nope, cooties aren't real. You shouldn't believe everything them crazy lions tell you." She says with an amused tone. "Sometimes there just joking around with you."

"Jokes … huh," Kikora says dumbly, feeling both relieved that cooties won't cause her to scratch herself hairless, but also a little hurt that the adults would play with her innocence that way. "Hm, 'kay then." She hops from her sitting position, froggishly, on to Mwaliko's back and shoulders, dragging herself up roughly until she's sprawled like a throw-rug. "But … what Kori told me 'bout cubs is true, right?"

Kiini chuckles as the conversation goes on between Mwaliko and Kikora. "And what did Kori tell you about cubs exactly?" Kiini asks, raising an eyebrow in curiousity. Its Kori afterall, who only knows what was all said.

Mwaliko lifts a brow and ahs softly thinking. "What he said when I was there? Yes that's mostly true." She offers with a soft smile.

Kikora pipes up, happy to share her oh-so-infinite knowledge with Kiini. She's warmed up to him some, growing more comfortable with the older males of the pride — though skittish and timid at first, she has adjusted quite well to her new 'family'. "He saaaid that when a lion and a lioness decide to have cubs, they go off and spend lots of time hugging, and then cubs are in the mommy's belly because of will-power and love, and when they are born, the mommy goes to sleep and wakes up to her new babies." She smiles brightly at Kiini from atop Mwaliko, nuzzling her chin against the lioness's ear idly.

Making his way into the area is the mentioned lion, Kori, who is lumbering with his usual slow manner. Each step he takes is quiet, and calculated as he lunges through the lush, thick grass. His black form glistens in the sunlight in a brilliant shine, giving off a nearly oil like shimmer. Clearing his throat into a soft chuff, his ears lift upwards upon his dark mane as he catches his name from the squeaky voice of the cub, training his attention upon the others.

Kiini hmms to this, glancing once again over at Mwaliko first. "Sounds pretty close to me." Kiini replies, still rather amused that the cub seems to be set on finding such things out at her age. The chuff is enough to break his gaze on the lioness though. "Hey Kori." Kiini replies in greeting to the chuff.

Mwaliko doesn't seem to care that the girl is perched on her now, a soft purr escaping her. Her gaze drifts over to Kori, and would nod if it wasn't for the cub basicly on her head. "Evening Kori." She offers while her tail curls to her side.

The girl listens intently to both Kiini and Mwaliko, figuring that it -must- be true, seeing as how they're parents … and they're agreeing! "Okay!" She says simply enough, her ears swiveling forward as Kori chuffs his greeting. Her brown eyes glisten brightly and she slides off of Mwaliko like a snake, leaping in the dark-furred lion's direction — she practices her playful stotting, leaping with all four paws in the air like a gazelle. "Koooooori-kori-kori," Kikora calls out, headbutting his forearm when she's close enough, and then slinking her way between his forepaws, bumping her sides and hips against him affectionately. "Hi!"

Watching Kikora spring towards him, Kori raises a brow upwards slowly, smiling at the corners of his muzzle as he leans down to push his muzzle against her small frame, rubbing her fur gently as he softly rumbles in his throat. "Good afternoon to you too, little one. You are in a good mood." He says, settling back upon his strong haunches, and curling the child closer against him as he swabs her ears with a slow lick of his tongue. Ears lifting upwards towards the other two, he gives Kiini a slow nod of his head, then turns his gold eyes upon Mwaliko. He studies her for a moment, before angling his attention back to the child. "Have you played with Gadi and Lailen today?"

With the cub heading off away from Mwaliko, Kiini finally rises up to all fours. He's careful to do it in such a fashion as to not disturb his own cubs. From here he stretches himself out some, and steps forward to where Mwaliko is. He lowers his head in attempt to nuzzle the other lioness, remarking "I guess I need to go on patrol for a little while, Mwal. The cubs are probably going to be hungry when they wake up."

Mwaliko tilts her head as she watches Kori and purrs faintly as she watches Kikora while she lifts her head to listions curiously. A soft chuckle escapes her as she listions to Kikora. "I think she likes you Kori." Her gaze turns to Kiini and her ears perk forward while she nods, a faint nosing offered back to the lion. "Alright.. Take care Kiini."

Kikora is captured by the large lion's forepaw, giggling some as she's swept into an embrace, ears now squeaky clean. "Not t'daaay," she says sheepishly, watching as Kiini heads off for his patrols. "Me an' 'Len talked the other night, though. We tried to play with one of Mwaali's cubs, but she didn't wanna." She yawns a little, comfortable with all the affection she's receiving in the pride — something that wasn't bestowed upon her before, even from her own flesh and blood.

"I see, then you should play with them tomorrow if you can. I know Gadi enjoys tussling with you." Kori says as he holds the child close to him, almost protectively as he rubs his muzzle about his ears, quietly rumbling away in the depth of his large chest. As Kiini ambles off, he turns his eyes upon him again, watching him head off. This is the first night he's taken off from patrols.. at least since the incident, and the itch to go join him tugs at the back of his neck for a moment. With a resigned breath, he looks back to the child. "So, have you been a good girl today?"

Mwaliko watches Kiini go, her ears lowering slightly before she turns her gaze to her children. A soft sigh escaping her and she flops over onto her side stretching out while she listions to Kori and Kikora. Her eyes closing for the moment.

"Yeees siiir," Kikora draws out in a 'why yes, I have been good — but against my will' voice. She allows Kori to rub his muzzle against her, her brown eyes sweeping across the multitude of sleeping bodies that rest near the waterfall. "Kor' and 'Goo haven't been awake much. I miss them." The prospect of playing with Gadi and Lailen is still quite appealing, though — even though she hasn't gotten to know them as well as the two brothers. "When Baaalana takes us to the volcano, can 'Len and Gadi come, too?" She cranes her neck and head back, looking at Kori as best as she can with her greatest 'oh please oh please' grin on her face.

Johari starts to move around though, woken by the sound of movement all around her. The cub wiggles her way through the pile of cubs, landing a bit awkardly on her paws as she finally frees herself. "Momma!" The little cub exclaims with enough of a voice so that Mwaliko must be aware of her daughter's woken presence. If that wasn't enough she goes straight up to Mwaliko and bops into her mom's cheek with her forehead.

Tilting his head down to her, Kori takes in a deep breath, shifting his tail about his hips for a moment as he thinks. He finds himself at war with his thoughts, wrestling them back, and forth. "… Yes… yes they can go with you. I trust Balana." He says as his tail coils around his hip slowly, before giving her another squeeze against his frame. "And only if you are careful, and you watch over them, alright? Can you be a big sister?" He asks, giving her a smile across his dark muzzle, before lifting his eyes up to Mwaliko, noticing her sigh. Ears twitching, he clears his throat. "Mwaliko, would you care to get din-…" He pauses as he hears the young child squeaking out towards her, then grows silent.

Mwaliko blinks and glances to Johari and chuckles softly while purring and nuzzles back against her daughter. "Hello Johari.. Felt like waking up huh?" She questions softly while lifting a large forepaw to softly curl it around the girl. Her bright gaze drifts to Kori, ears perking faintly. "What was that Kori?" Is questioned curiously.

Kikora? A big sister? "Sure! I promise, I won't let nothin' happen." She grins brightly at Kori, giving him one last good nuzzle along his forearm before she trots a few feet away, giving the two adults some relative 'privacy'. Her eyes are focused on Wingu and Korzar's sleeping forms, and she too heaves a little sigh. Sleepin'! It's obvious that she misses the two brothers, her closest friends in the pride, but is completely able to befriend new faces as well. "Hey, it's the little hunter!" Kiko's ears lift as she notices Johari, walking slowly toward the much smaller lioness cub.

"Uh huh!" The cub announces with glee. "I'm hungry!" Johari adds there after, letting the whole world know that its time for her dinner. Her time span for attention is next to nothing though as one of her playmates comes in her direction. Oh, goodie! Jo starts to grin brightly. "You gonna pway again?" She just can't seem to get those 'l's right yet.

"It was nothing, Mwaliko." Kori says as he furrows his brows slightly, before rising upwards to his paws for a good long stretch of his frame. "I.. should get going. Patrols." Even though it /is/ his night off, it seems that he has some thinking to do. "Continue being good, Kikora. You're making me proud." He says with a soft rumble to his 'daughter' of sorts, before starting off through the grass once more.

Mwaliko watches Kori a few moments, a faint frown crossing her maw. "Right.." Is all she says seeming not to believe him. She is getting tired of males pulling this nothing act with her though. Her attention goes back to her daughter and she chuckles softly. "Of course you are." She licks against Johari's cheek while purring and smiles to Kikora, glad the two know each other.

Kikora slinks closer to Mwaliko and Johari, pausing to peer at Kori's retreating form. "I'll be good, I promise." She offers him another little smile, ears turning up as she notices his distracted demeanor. "We play when you come back, 'kay?" The cub gives a resolute nod, as if confirming it with Kori without any of his input. "And then you and Mwaaali can go play!" Of course, she's too young to pick up on crushes, let alone know what one is, she still senses that the male wants to make Mwaliko one of his friends. "I'll be good, though." She continues walking now, plopping down not too far from mother and cub with an exaggerated yawn.

Johari heads for the source of the food. Namely, mom's belly! There's nothing quite like mom's milk.

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