From the Journal of Aframos Longjourney, Pilgrim
With notes by Avos Torr, Scholar of Rheve Library
Tresday, Twentieth Cycle, Seventh Year, 81st Turn
Fifty-Seventh Day in the Trees
We remain in the cave. I believe that Torne will be ready to move soon. It is fortunate that his break was not worse. So long as he does not move his arm too much, he should be fine. Until then, I will be carrying both of our packs. Torne argued with me, but I held firm. He must take care not to hurt that arm further.
In the meantime, I have caught several rabbits that came too close to the cave. Souja caught her own dinner, an animal like a rat, but three times the size of any rat I have ever seen1. She is spending several hours a day gone. Where does she go? I keep asking myself if she will return the next time.
She is currently laying in the crook of my arm. She has grown so much. She is nearly the size of her mother now. She has traveled with me for seven cycles now. A short time for a Baro, but for a cat? She is nearly grown, I think.
Torne says that she will be leaving us soon. It is hard for me to bear that thought. I do not want her to leave. I wish for her to stay with us, where we may protect her. Where I can enjoy her company.
But that is not fair to her, is it? She must leave us at some point. She is a friend, and not merely a pet. It was a mistake to try to take her mother for a pet, I now see. She was a wild thing, and I was meddling in things I knew nothing about. Many people take wild things and make them tame. Horses, elephants, goats, sarlifins. They have success with it. But it is still a serious business. It is not right to do it lightly, as I tried to. I did not know what I was doing. Martap paid the price. Souja's mother paid the price.
I will not make the same mistake with Souja. I will not try to make her tame. She must leave soon, and I will not stop her.