“Julia! You’re gonna get the cops called on us,” Isra yelped. But Phoebe took a beer regardless. She sniffed it and tipped it back carefully, letting the liquid flow over the tip of her tongue. It almost tasted like nothing until she took a proper drink and overwhelming, dry bitterness filled her mouth. She coughed before taking another cautious sip, and then a less cautious one.

Image: Phoebe is viewed from the side, drinking beer. The bottle and her head are both tilted up, and her eyes are squeezed shut. End description.

By the time the empty case had been thrown into the fire to burn with the remaining wood, Cat had slipped into an accent that she didn’t care to identify, and she was halfway through her third beer. Her mind had become softer, the plans floating in her head seeming more plausible than they had earlier in the night. Thoughts of Silver were obscured comfortably behind the sensation of heat. It radiated out from the almost-too-intense flames, flicking against her eyelids and fur as she stared into them.

“I don’t know if she has...” A piece of conversation caught her attention. “Phoebe, you ever been to River City?” Julia asked.

“I went on a field trip to the capitol building once,” she answered. River City rivalled Grand Shore in size, and laid between the coast and the mountains. The train had passed through shortly before the accident, but she repressed the urge to mention it.

Image: Apricot and Yuli are playing in the field. Apricot is flying up to Yuli, who is standing on their haunches to reach her. Yuli is back to looking like a normal fox, and is also now wearing a blue party hat. End description.

“Great! Then you haven’t seen shit. Isra lives there, she can give you a tour next time we visit.”

Isra put her hands up in front of her. “I’m horrible with that stuff. Does her family even know she’s here?

“No parents,” Phoebe snatched another beer. “My aunt lives in another state. She thinks I'm at school, it’s fine.”

The circle went quiet as she gave a dry laugh, and she decided to focus on her drink when she saw that people were giving her pitiful looks rather than laughing with her. It didn’t take long for chatting to move on to other topics as smoke rose into the night air.



Sorry for the late update, thanks for your patience.