Saturday, 18 May 2013

The Fox - Part VII

Even though it had been centuries ago, the memory hit him with a force that rendered him blind to everything around him. The pain that lanced his side from the long gash made by their swords, her cries as they dangled her body above his, taunting him and his futile efforts to free her, her foot caught in the cruel steel teeth of the trap, the blood dripping into his face, coating his muzzle, the taste of her on his tongue. 

Iron, blood, pain, fear, anger, helplessness. His memories writhed around his head like a bloody haze that refused to dissipate. He had been discarded for the battle scars that ‘ruined’ his otherwise beautiful pelt. He lay in pain as the amateur hunters took her away and left him bleeding on the ground from sword-inflicted wounds from when he had tried to stop them from taking her away. 

For her fur, she had to die. Or maybe it was her unusual appearance that attracted attention. He regretted ever running out into the paths of humans in the quiet back roads that crisscrossed the countryside and occasionally through the forest. Both he and his consort knew the forest they inhabited had been gradually diminishing, thinking they had all the time in the world to find another place. When one had been living for thousands of years, things like time meant nothing of importance. However, this small ignorance on their part was the catalyst that resulted in her death. 

Did the foolish humans even stop to wonder what they had caught? A freak of nature perhaps? She with her nine tails and creamy pelt like no other fox had. 

They had come in the night, when they were drowsy and curled up with full stomachs. They must have tailed him as he trotted back to their den with that day’s catch caught between his jaws. They came with fire and swords drawn, sharp metal things that almost bled him dry as they cut him to shreds for biting them and trying to remove the trap that held his mate. 

Those wounds had taken what seemed like forever to heal even with the amount of power his mate had left him with. He remembered her eyes, shining liquid black in the firelight, the tears of pain that ran down her muzzle, the tracks they made staining the fur around her eyes and down her muzzle red. As red as her now useless leg that hung in the teeth of the trap, spilling a crimson tide that washed the grass with her scent. 

~Rei Shiori

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