Writing Prompt 043
Tears streamed from her tired eyes and splashed down her face and onto the foliage below. An entire afternoon and night she had spent in the forest, lost. Mama and Papa had always told her to stay where she was when lost. Dawn was just starting to crack the sky apart and she was wet and trembling in it’s feeble light. She was thankful that the light chased the shadows away, and that she could now see the sounds of the forest instead of just hearing them. They had tormented her all night. Shapeless shuffling’s and noisy bird noises. She had slept nary a wink fearing that she would be eaten by the feared black bear of the region.
A branch cracked to her right and she jumped. Perhaps the bear had come for her after all.
She turned and gasped. A large buck stood but a few feet from her, it’s large antlers brushing the low-hanging tree branches and it’s black eyes gleaming. She was mesmerized by his eyes. He stared right at her for what felt like a tremendous length of time. Somehow, she felt that he was gentle. That he wouldn’t hurt her for the world. He took a small step backwards, but continued to stare into her eyes. Wiping her nose with the back of her hand and trying to stem the tears, she took a step towards him. He didn’t move. She took another step and raised her hand. Not once did he flinch.
Breathless, she gently rested her hand on his face, just above his nose. The only sign that he was alive was the flaring of his nostrils as he exhaled. His eyes still stared at her unblinking. His fur was rough, but soft at the same time. She stroked him and he quivered slightly beneath her touch.
After a moment, he took a step back and she followed. He turned, still so slowly, and started walking, but still holding her gaze. It was almost as if he wanted her to follow him. She took one step after another until they passed around a tree and she suddenly found herself in the midst of a herd of deer. A few snuffed and stamped their feet, but they just gazed at her with deep, dark eyes, so similar to the bucks. They slowly started walking and she continued to follow them. The buck stayed beside her the whole way. Little by little, their pace picked up speed and she found herself running through the forest, following the herd, with them and of them.
She didn’t realize they had stopped until she suddenly burst from the trees and into a clearing. A cabin stood, settled into the hillside with smoke curling from it’s chimney. With a gasp she realized she was home.
She turned back into the woods and saw the buck, staring at her with his wise, gentle eyes. She rested her hand on his face once more and she saw his tail flick.
“Janey!!!!” She heard Papa calling her name from the other side of the field. “JANEY!” He sounded so scared.
She ran from the forest and was soon engulfed in a torrent of affection, hugs, laughter and many tears. Her mama cried more than most and wouldn’t let go of her hand, even when she insisted they all come to the woods to meet her friends who had “brought her home”. The obliged her, but Janey was surprised to find that the forest was empty. Not one animal moved in sight. She started to cry. Her friends were gone.
I think I was as mesmerized by the buck as Janey was. I remember having read a true story where a child claimed to be protected and led to safety by wildlife a long time ago when I was little . . . The Lord can work in mysterious ways and I remember being awed by the story.
What do you think of the prompt? Let me know in the comments! I love hearing from you all!
By God’s Grace,