‘Come, let’s talk about everything that happened today. I need it to release some frustration since, from start to finish, this has been an unpleasant day, one of those where whatever could go wrong, does’
This is a bit hasty for a greeting, but it’s not worth wasting time with formalities, so I’ll tell you all about it from the beginning without further ado.
The problems started during the night, for not long after the sun went down, I had a nightmare, which prevented me from sleeping any longer. In fact, I was probably only able to do so for about two hours at most, so the rest of the time, I was in a bad mood and Sleepy.
I became irritable from spending long periods tossing and turning endlessly on an uncomfortable branch. I even tried to alleviate that by grabbing a handful of leaves nearby to use as a pillow or, the larger ones, as a blanket to protect me from the cold gusts of wind at high altitudes, but to no avail.
In the end, exhausted and with a growing migraine, I had to take off the garments covering me, which I still had after borrowing them with no intention of returning them, to tie them around my head and then squeeze them roughly to ease the ache.
‘I would have preferred to have done it with a wet cloth because, based on my own experience, that works better’
Anyway, doing that helped a little, but not enough, as despite lying there with my eyes closed for hours, I didn’t get to sleep before dawn.
To make matters worse, the wakefulness caused breakfast to taste even worse than usual. So, without finishing it, I left the room where the food was served to continue with my daily routine.
I planned to stretch to avoid tearing my muscles during the run. However, the loud noise of the group of imbeciles, who had just eaten, made the headache come back. So, to avoid doing something stupid, I moved away from them, going to a quiet space among the trees to complete my preparation.
A very unwise idea since doing so prevented me from being present when the party departed.
That is why, with great reluctance, I had to try harder than usual to catch up with them. In addition, while running, I was about to fall several times after tripping over tree roots, and although, in the end, that didn’t happen, it certainly took me out of my mind.
‘Still, I must say that not everything that happened was negative. After all, life is not black and white but gray, but it is up to fate to decide how dark or light its tone is’
With that said, one good thing happened during the journey, which was that we were fortunate enough to come across a young rabbit only about three meters tall, so hunting went smoothly before the group split in two, with half going to carry the carcass back to the cave as the rest continued to search for prey.
At that time, I had the opportunity to return to make up for lost sleep without appearing to be a coward. However, the idea of good meat waiting for me at dinner time filled me with motivation to continue moving, for I thought there was nothing better than eating your fill after a hard day’s work.
‘A silly mistake’
The fatal combination of tiredness and wandering thoughts led to the fact that, while a battle was going on against a family of damn cats, one of them managed to ambush me, which I did not perceive in time.
Fortunately, because the others were attracting the attention of the adults, the one that pounced on me, although it was not a cub, was not far from being one. Thus, its attack did not take my life on the spot, although its large jaws were brutally skewered on my left arm.
When its sharp fangs penetrated my muscles until they scraped the bone, I couldn’t help but shriek in pain. A useless action since that didn’t help me to get someone to come to my aid.
I was in pain and afraid, but knowing that if I did nothing, I would die, while lying on the ground with it on top of me, I took a nearby rock, and with it, I began to strike its head, aiming at his eyes, yet being unable to hit it correctly.
Despite that, the impacts damaged it, so after a while of trying to rip my arm off by the root, it let go of me as it moved to bite the hand I was attacking it with, which of course, I did not allow it to do.
Taking advantage of the instant of clarity after the pain subsided, I forced my brain into the state where everything seemed slow to my eyes so I could knee it in the belly before it could achieve its goal.
Evidently, that wasn’t enough to defeat it, so once it was distracted by the sudden blow, I kicked it with all my might to send it flying away from me. Although, its weight didn’t allow the distance between us to widen too much.
‘Yes, it wasn’t much, but it was enough to give me time to get up’
Then, with it in front of me, both of us standing, the height difference was clear. Measuring just over a meter, I looked down at it as it tensed its muscles, preparing to attack me at the slightest sign of weakness.
Knowing that I could not allow it, using what I heard should be done when facing a bear, I widened my body as much as possible, trying to look bigger and corpulent than I really was, although my unusable arm did not help me to appear so, as it was hanging at my side.
Restlessness squeezed my heart, which seemed like it would explode due to the speed at how fast it was beating. In addition, my chest and lungs ached from having to endure the lack of air. My body wanted to take heavy breaths, but I did not allow it, hence the consequences.
Time felt eternal to me. Every second, amplified by my speed of thought, felt like an hour, and apparently, I wasn’t the only one who experienced it, as the animal in front of me was also becoming more and more robust.
It was ready to pounce. Meanwhile, I was not ready to receive it.
As if it had been waiting for that moment, when I swallowed my saliva because of my nerves, it started to run. It was coming in my direction, so, with reluctance, I raised my unharmed arm to protect my neck and head, using it as bait.
Without reaching me, I felt its teeth digging into my body. A phantom pain, which in the end turned out not to be there since the beast passed by my side to escape from the rest of the party that had already finished with his family.
The situation came to an anticlimactic end, although that was only the beginning of my suffering. After all, I still had to run all the way home. Besides, my arm was not the only one damaged during that short but brutal fight.
The son of a bitch, while biting me, used the claws on its four paws to scratch me all over, and although the wounds were not deep, they were many. Therefore, the pain I felt as I ran and covered them with sweat was unbearable.
In addition, the garments I had treated with such care were now completely torn to shreds, leaving pieces of fabric that could not cover me at all.
‘Well, actually, that’s not a problem since I’ll go and get some more tomorrow. After all, from what I saw last time, women have plenty of them. Not only clothes of their size but also men’s, which I guess they cut and reshape to fit their slender bodies’
Continuing with the narrative of my misfortunes, on my return, I ended up so exhausted from blood loss, hunger, and lack of rest that I ended up falling asleep at the foot of a tree almost instantly, so recently when I woke up, it was already dark, which meant that I missed dinner.
‘‘The tender rabbit meat… for sure, only the bones were left behind’’
After wiping with the back of my right hand the tears in my eyes and the saliva from my mouth, I stood up to head inside the cave, for in the condition I was in, I would not be able to ascend to where my usual bed was, and it was not safe to stay here, so I planned to spend the time in one of the empty rooms.
A bit depressing, as being sleep deprived, I won’t even be able to see the starry sky to while away the hours. However, in a way, I should be grateful that this has happened because it has helped me to wake up.
The truth is that I am weak, more than most beings living in this forest, but that is no excuse to remain so without doing anything to change it, waiting for a gift that may or not come.
Seeing, remembering, and analyzing are important for strategizing, but they didn’t help me when a real fight happened. I need practice. I urgently need to take action to prevent another unexpected situation like today’s from beating me.
At the end of the day, although I survived this event, I can’t be sure it will be the same in the next one.
‘So, when my wounds are sufficiently healed, I will join the hunting party, not as a spectator but as a fighter’