Sojourn Saturday #1 – The Woods

Happy Sojourn Saturday!

Here’s the final short story before tomorrow’s compilation

The Woods

“The howling is unsettling.” I mutter to myself. I would have discussed this with my companion, if they were still alive. “Probably just the wind… I hope it’s just the wind.”
Oaks and pines swayed un-rhythmically, unsure of which direction the wind wanted them to lean. Odd scents carried by the air mingled into a rotten musk, mostly wet wood and fermenting fruit.
“The path is coming up. I’m sure this time.” The truth was I’d lost the path days ago, my companion had lost his life because of it. No time for guilt. I’ll mourn when I’m safe.
Moss-covered roots obscured my journey, high and thick they walled in my strength. I’d dropped my pack on the second day, we’d eaten too quickly, and since then I’d only eaten the odd berry that didn’t look too poisonous.
Where am I going again? I wondered. “Out of this cursed wood!” I yelled, trying to conjure up some courage.
Something responded. A deep lonely call. Not as shrill as a wolf, more like a groaning. Could be a bear… Or worse.
I picked up the pace.
I stumbled on a root, or maybe it hit me, I couldn’t tell. I didn’t care. I needed to run.
The groan came again. Closer than before.
And ran faster, my foot struck something.
I grit my teeth and push myself off the ground, I wasn’t dying here.
Mid-leap I heard a whistle, something hit and sharp had hit me in the base of the skull. I reached behind me to check for blood, I pulled out a dart.
A dart?
I went dark.

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