Blue Water

Seekers Series. I'm sort of restarting. Sort of, I'm not officially back. My other story will temporarily be taken down and may (or may not) be put back up. I'm not sure yet. For Angel981 who inspired me enough to write this.

Disclaimer: I do not own Seekers.

Lusa sat at the edge of a running stream, dabbing her paws in and blinking at the clear water hopefully, sniffing the air for a taste of fish.

Toklo padded up, fixing his golden stare on the rushing water. "What are you doing?" he asked, tilting his head to one side and looking at the smaller black bear.

Lusa thrust her muzzle into the water, flicking a few drops of the sparkling water onto the bank and prodding them hopefully. "I'm trying to fish."

Toklo snorted, looking amused. "That's no way to fish," he told her, shaking his head and flicking his ears.

"If you're so smart, then teach me how to fish properly," Lusa challenged.

Toklo gave her a look, and seemed to think about it for a moment. "Alright, but no bouncing around like a cub, and you have to be quiet," he said, looking reluctant.

"First, you have to concentrate," he explained, stepping into the water. "You have to look for the fish and make sure you don't take your eyes off of it."

He demonstrated by stepping into the water, keeping his muzzle well above the rapids. Lusa imitated him, not stepping as far in as she was shorter than he was. She then turned to him for the next instruction.

"Now, do you see any fish?" he asked, turning his head to her.

Lusa stared hard into the water, but saw no flicker of fins or fish. She knew what fish looked like, as the flatfaces had brought the white bears fish sometimes as a treat. They had been pale grey, and had silvery fins.

"No," Lusa replied, dipping her muzzle in.

For a long moment, both bears stared into the water, then Toklo waded out, flicking his ears in annoyance. "I'll teach you properly when we find a river with fish." He stormed off, kicking up pebbles without a second thought.

Lusa glanced at Toklo, and lowered her ears sadly. She knew they all missed Urjurak, and she missed him too. But she hated to see Toklo so upset.

She pricked her ears as she spotted a seal hole. "Can you teach me to fish, now?" she asked, bounding forward with too much energy for the time it was.

Toklo lifted his head and didn't speak. Slowly, he turned toward the seal hole and his ears pricked for a second. Then they flattened slightly against his head. "There's no fish in this water," he answered simply.

"Then teach me to catch a seal," Lusa insisted. She wanted him to do something, anything besides mope around for Urjurak. "I want to learn."

"Have Kallik teach you," Toklo snapped and baring his teeth at her, shuffled off. He sat down on the ice a few bearlengths away, and Lusa turned to give Kallik a helpless look.

Kallik lowered her head slightly, seeming to understand what Lusa was trying to do. "Come on Lusa, I'll show you. But I'd stand back," Kallik warned, padding forward to the ice hole.

Lusa trotted in last, glancing at Yakone and Kallik, the white bears were walking side by side. Lusa lifted her head higher and saw Toklo, ever the leader, out in front. His head was low, as he fought onward, not stopping for anything.

He walked on at a steady pace, leading them on to meet so many challenges.

Lusa bolted forward, nearly stumbling over her paws in her eagerness.

Last time she'd seen Great Bear Lake, it had been the middle of burn-sky as Kallik put it. Now, it was empty. There were no bears on the lake, and it was all clear. She could see the trees where the black bears lived, and pricked her ears at the thought of Miki being there. Though she doubted it.

She turned her head, looking at the clear lake. The water was a clear, cerulean blue and sparkled in the sunlight.

"Toklo!" she yelped gleefully, and the brown bear lifted his head toward her. "Fish," she turned her nose toward the water and he followed her gaze. For a moment he looked at the water in near confusion until he nodded.

"There's probably fish in the lake," he answered. He padded toward it hopefully.

Lusa splashed in, and stood like she had last time. He waded in, staring into the lake for a long time. "When you see a fish, leap. But don't leap at the place it is, you have to aim for the place where it will be, because it'll move. You have to trust your paws-when you hit the water, it'll spray up and you won't be able to see. So aim carefully."

Lusa did as he told her. She stood in the water for a long time, even after Toklo had splashed out and retreated to join the two white bears.

Lusa glanced back at the three. She knew that soon they would be splitting up. But she had to hunt. What kind of bear would survive if she couldn't catch a fish? She turned her attention back to the water.

She waited, and then she saw it, a flash of silver. Trusting her paws, she lunged, and for a moment, all she felt was the rush of water, and then her claws sliced into flesh. She lowered her head, digging her teeth in and stepping back. She ran up the shore, a flapping fish in her jaws. The taste of salmon ran over her tongue, but she resisted the urge to gulp it down.

Instead, she ran up the bank, dropping the still-wet fish at his paws. "I got one," she said proudly.

Toklo stared at the fish for a full moment before he lifted his muzzle to touch her's briefly. "Good job," he complimented her, flicking one ear in her direction.