What the Cold Brings In
—Written after the second extreme cold season in a row, this journal chronicles the additional problems such an unusual weather pattern creates.
Dt: 296 A.T.
No avoc will ever say a cold season is easy. Some avocs are just born into the wrong generation, into an unlucky year on an unlucky planet-star where there’s an awful combination of dust rolling in from The Blade and the wrong wind blowing down from the mountains that make a cold season more bitter and rough than it ought to be. These seasons are only supposed to have come once a generation, if that, but for us unlucky avocs in Ceelini we have survived two of these in a row.
There’s all the normal problems of a cold season that have to do with insulation, stored crops and food spoiling from the cold, insufficient heat in your home, and the pest of whyrs. Red whyrs with their smaller beaks are usually able to get into door handholds so you have to latch the doors from the inside. Always an inconvenience when you forget it’s latched and try to go out or someone locks you out and falls asleep inside. But these are better than reds spoiling your food, or bringing a draft in for the night…or even a purple whyr to pick you apart.
In a normal cold season … actually before a cold season as it begins to cool, you notice bapuva coming out of the forests to try and find any food that is still available before they journey up to the mountains to hibernate. What’s made this worse is that before the first cold season had ended the temperature and constant storms of the season somehow got them out of hibernation early. Bapuva had been hunting all year by the time the next cooling season rolled around, and the rivers and forests were a little too bare – for them and us.
Running out of food and time, the bapuva began to come into Ceelini. At first it was relatively calm, they just kind of paced on the fringes just beyond the treeline. You could tell they were tired – it was odd mix of constantly eating to build up a fat supply, but clearly they hadn’t gotten enough because they were way too thin to hibernate. A few weeks went by of them hanging out between us and the woods with us just as nervous as them.
But soon they figured out what they could eat. Certainly, it wasn’t us, and despite their general strength and numbers, they could not get past our defenses to get into our food supply. What they could get are the cranipxum that Ceelini avocs took care of. Most avoc communities I’ve been to have some fielee cranipxum that everyone pitches in to take care of throughout the year. When we do so, we can keep their population under control and young avoc love to play with them.
Ceelini’s oldest cranipxum and most beloved was Peegae. I unfortunately have to say was because we discovered the group of cranpixum one cold morning between storms were crowding around a tail, and after looking at each of their faces, we could figure out that our Peegae was gone. She would have been 19 by now.
The cold brings in more than you think when a bad cold season hits your area of Pale Shores. Take care of anything and every thing you care about.