Malcolm knelt down in front of Salali and carefully listened to what she was saying. It took a while but he eventually started to figure out the words, if not the meaning. So he repeated it back to her, everytime she whispered, he did too. Salali's eyes shot open as she spoke louder, fresh tears pouring out. With a heart wrenching sob she finally switched to English.

"He's dead!" her rough voice was ghastly with heart break and emotion. Malcolm smoothed a hand over her forehead, settling the large woman's hair and wiping tears off her face. Alice handed him the Kleenex so he could mop up some of the mess, her own efforts earlier resulted in a pile of used tissue.

"Who's dead Salali?" Malcolm asked softly.

"Honon." she replied, voice gone soft. Alice frowned, not knowing whom that was, but recognizing that tone of voice. Pure grief that only comes when a pillar of your world was unfairly torn down.

Ace crouched next to Malcolm, ignoring the unhappy look he gave her. "Was Honon family or friend?" she asked.

"Soul mate." Salali replied, reaching a hand out to Alice. Ace grabbed it and gripped it, squeezing hard as Sal did the same. "In my tribe, when two are born at the same time to different families, they are considered sould mates. Each special because they carry their own soul, and a piece of the other's. Honon was my friend. Honon was my lover. Honon is dead." Salali stated, the tears gone and her voice sounding lost. "What do I do without him?" she asked. An echo of pain flared through Alice. That'd been the question she'd asked when her father had died.

She'd been given no answer then, and over the years had searched for one on her own. She brought their clasped hands to her chest, letting Salali feel the beat of her heart. "You mourn him. And you cry for him. And when the tears run out, you remember the good times. And then you honour his memory by living."

Malcolm gave her an unfathomable look and Salali sniffed. The tears still dripped out of her eyes, but she seemed to start catching her breath. Mal finally took off his jacket and shucked his wet shoes in the corner, sitting on the couch next to Salali after she sat up.

"I'd like that ice cream now." Salali requested, looking at Alice. Ace nodded and ran to get it as Mal shot them both confused looks. But when Salali told him to help Alice in the kitchen, he reluctantly got up, as if loathe to be near her right now.

They scooped out three bowls of moose tracks ice cream and Alice grabbed the chocolate sauce from the rather empty shelves and poured it over, having already seen Salali do that by peference. The heart broken Native woman had a definite sweet tooth. When they both reached for the drawer with the cutlery, Mal jerked his hand away as if Alice were contagious.

"Alright, what the hell is wrong with you?" Alice hissed at him, keeping her voice low.

"You." he snarled back. "Everytime I listen to your advice, my relationship gets screwed up." he grabbed the spoon from her and roughly stabbed it into the ice cream, sending a scoop flying.

"Maybe it should occur to you that I'm not the problem. Is it that I give you bad advice, or is it that your relationship is what's wrong? How often do you have to compromise yourself to make her happy?" Alice demanded, turning to face Malcolm straight on. "I'm not the problem for once Mal. Usually you'd be right to blame it on me, everyone else does. But the problem here is that I make you see things you wish you could ignore. Like I said before, don't shoot the messenger. But you have to decide if you're going to be your own man or her perfect boyfriend. Because it's obvious you can't be both." she grabbed two of the bowls and went back to the couch, leaving Malcolm to fume silently in the kitchen. She hadn't meant to say all that, had wanted to keep this about being here for Salali, but his anger had provoked her own. It was like when she fought Stuart. She knew that it would hurt less if she didn't, that if she just let it happen there's be no scars. But it would have killed something inside to have done that. She understood that for some women that was their choice, but she wasn't that strong. It was fight or die for her, so she fought.

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