81st Turn, Seventh Year, Twentieth Cycle, Skyday
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From the Journal of Aframos Longjourney, Pilgrim

With notes by Avos Torr, Scholar of Rheve Library

Skyday, Twentieth Cycle, Seventh Year, 81st Turn

Fifty-Second Day in the Trees

I am not certain what is wrong with me, but it is making me crazy. I almost attacked a fellow wanderer this afternoon.

Souja had wandered ahead of us. I was busy trying to adjust my robes to keep them on me, when I noticed she was not with us. I saw her going around a bend, and I hurried to catch her.

When I turned the corner, I found a creature not unlike a human, but shorter, with a long, bulbous nose and hair under its chin1. It was standing over Souja, who was on her side. It had its hand on her belly.

I did not think. I simply loosed a growl, and started moving forward at the creature. It gave a high-pitched scream, and dived into the bushes. I heard it crashing through the underbrush in its haste to get away.

I looked down at Souja, who looked up at me quizzically. It realized then that the stranger had simply been petting her. There had been no danger to her.

Why did I react as I did? I should not have responded so irrationally. I acted almost as a mother brooding over her eggs. All I could think of was that she was in danger, and I needed to protect her.

My robes ripped when I was running. I would put on one of the others, but they are likewise too small. How could they have all shrunk so much? Have I gotten larger? I had thought I had reached my full growth, but it is possible that I am having a final stretch. I hope I do not grow too large. No female wants a male as large as she is.

I wish I could go home. I could visit the healer, and he would know what was wrong with me. But I know that that is quite impossible. For better or worse, I am in these woods until I can complete my quest.

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