It might have happened that Beryl preferred Gypsum while Topaz favored Feldspar. That would have presented a dilemma resulting in either the abandonment of the courtship, or a dictatorial declaration by the girls' father to acquiesce to the males' preferences. Which might have resulted in a mutiny in his own household.
Fortunately, Topaz found Gypsum's slightly leaner and speedier frame the more appealing of the two while Beryl was absolutely enthralled by the mighty musculature that Feldspar's physique revealed.
Other than the slight difference in the ruff at the neck and the spiral of the one horn, both females were identical and identically stunning. Their pelts were a very light brown with bright golden highlights mixed thoroughly throughout, giving them an appearance of blonde.
The small feminine noses on the ends of their delicate muzzles were a tan color our heroes had never seen before. They were captivated.
That very afternoon the four went strolling through the town. This was a custom observed universally on Kylrock. It announced that the suitors had made their choices. The other females would not be kept waiting in suspense, and any local lads that may have had ideas about the blonde twins would turn their attentions elsewhere.
As they strolled, they chatted. The young men followed their genetic predisposition and allowed their companions to dominate the conversation. They were pleased to discover that though the young women could keep the conversation going, neither insisted on filling every second with gossip or empty chatter. Periods of silence were allowed their turn. Only a few minutes into the walk each women had brazenly put her hand into that of her companion. This startled the young men, for according to the customs of Groakpod it was too early in the relationship for such familiarity.
But they had encountered other differences already in other towns from their hometown customs, so they did not pull away. They noticed, too, that none of the people they passed seemed at all scandalized by the contact. They seemed to barely notice, although one of two of the older female citizens smiled knowingly at the sight.
The leisurely stroll around and through The City took almost two hours. During that time Beryl and Topaz, with teasing insistence, coaxed Feldspar and Gypsum to tell them more about themselves and their journey.
With only a show of reluctance the young men obliged and described only some of what they had encountered and accomplished.
By prearranged strategy, each twin made sure to praise the courage and competence of the other as they related their stories.
The women made no secret of their admiration and heaped compliments upon their suitors. The men responded with their own compliments and very soon the atmosphere surrounding the four became so affectionate that breaking taboos might have resulted.
Fortunately, at that same time they arrived back at the ladies' home and, with teasing quick caresses of long nails upon the rough fur of the male arms, the twin girls disappeared into their house, leaving behind the echoes of soft happy laughter. The doorway was then filled by their parents.
The second step of the courtships could now begin.