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Saturday, April 7, 2012

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Night Wanderings {2::1}

Maun froze as she felt all the dark of the night stirring. She crept into the bushes, afeared of what will come out of the heart of the shadows. A mist slithered around the trees, but it stank of cold and evil. She gripped the trunk of the nearest pine as distant footfalls seemed to grow louder. Maun whimpered, and clawed herself deep into the wild branches. Blood flowed from her mangled hands, as she whispered silently, go away, go away. Please do not find me.

The frightened girl thought of how she could escape. No brilliant plans came to her. She was trapped like a fly in a cobweb, and the spider progressed to find its prey. A twig snapped barely a quarter of a mile away, and she panicked.

Maun climbed stealthily up the pine. Perhaps Titalukia would not reach her up there. She strung up her pride in herself. Of course lumbering creatures can not climb, and she was wise to believe so. Badgers can not reach trees, so Titatlukia should not either.

The limbs of the pine creaked underneath her weight as she continued, and the needles pricked her tattered face. The strange mist followed her upward, and thickened the air too strongly with moisture. Maun tried to inhale, but she only coughed out water. The cursed mist is trying to choke me! Anything to keep me on the forest floor, just as I thought, so Titalukia may devour me. It must be part of the dark magic, she reasoned, as she heaved for air.

Maun decided she would not drown while balanced in the treetops, so she clambered down to perhaps a greater peril.

A freezing wind snaked around the woods, chilling Maun so much she believed she could take no more. The girl shivered violently, listening to the terrifying melody of brush snapping, and heavy thuds. Maun would not give up as long as she had hope, but even that was ebbing away.

The thing, whatever it was, would appear in the clearing in a few minutes.
***
Maun knew she would soon die, whether that from freezing to death or eaten alive by Titalukia. The knowledge should have horrified her, for the spoiled girl had never feared anything more than if her father would actually bring the gift he promised.

But it instead made her angry, enraged at the fate that has fallen upon her, that should not be hers. That there is not anything she can do to save herself.

In her frustration, Maun grabbed a nearby stone and hurled it at the undergrowth. It disappeared from sight. She threw rock after rock, and they clambered loudly as they shot to invisible places.

This was not wise on her part. Her soft limbs ached from this sudden activity, and she was being noisy, only alerting Titalukia were she was, if it did not know already. Maun bent her head in submission to the looming, painful death that awaited her. She should at least make use of the last moments of her life.

She begged for everyone she ever disgraced to forgive her. Even to the children in the village, for if she was not so rude to them, they would have never have locked her outside. Maun even acknowledged the nice life she had lived, which was unusual, for she never thanked anyone for anything.

But enough of that. Titalukia, stood only twenty feet away. There was movement at the trees the farthest away, nearly covered by overhanging vines.

But then, what was that scampering at the other end of the glade? She took a half-hearted peer at the dying grass there, only to see White-Tailed Deer and Ground Squirrel thunder out.

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