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What The Jungle Holds
What The Jungle Holds
★★★★★

© Mo'iz Qutbi

Children

4 Minutes   1.3K    52


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I went into the woods like I did ever since I was a child. I knew the path well like the back of my hand.

Jumped over a fallen tree, hopped a few steps and turned left at the mulberry Bush to reach a clearing amidst the dense forest. This clearing had a pond with some algae growth in it... This spot had been my favourite since time immemorial for this place has with it such peace and tranquility that I felt my racing heart immediately slow down to a relaxed pace.

But i sensed something out of place in this peace. Something that left no trace...

My name is Sheru, that's what my mother called me telling me that I'm lion hearted.

Born and brought up in the village by this forest.

As a young boy I accompanied my father into the woods everyday to collect berries and to catch fishes from the pond where I am standing today.

My father taught me everything I needed to survive on my own.. Taught me to make a spear out of a tree branch and to hunt fishes with it. I was so clumsy in the beginning that my spears would just float away having hit nothing. But, I was a determined student and over a few months, I could strike a fish with precision from 50 feet away.

And my father was proud. One more ability of mine gave my father immense pride was my speed at climbing a tree. He'd say that he had never seen a boy climb up any tree like that before.

Fifteen years later, both my parents died from a mysterious sickness and I have been on my own since...

As a routine I run into the woods, tracing the path that I had memorized so well, to gather some berries and dry branches to fire...

Today, there was something different about the air near the pond, it reeked of blood and decaying flesh...

The wonderful view of the setting sun was so endearing, I tried to ignore the stink and enjoy the view. 'My old man never stopped to appreciate nature.' I say to myself and just then I hear something that freezes me all over. A sound that came from only a few feet behind me...

It was almost dark when I heard the growl of a wolf. Stunned by the sound of a predator in such a close vicinity, my body was in shock but my mind racing, trying to recollect my father's teachings about what to do when one lands in such a situation. I peeked over my shoulder and saw not one, but a pack of four wolves, all with their eyes fixed on their dinner standing in front of them...

Luckily, I had my wooden spear within my hand's reach. I grabbed it and ran to my right mumbling prayers to all the Gods I knew. Running along the open pond, I knew it'd be only a few seconds before the wolves caught up with me. So in I dived through the bushes and started zigzagging through the forest with all my stamina. Giant strides, leaping over logs and dodging trees with the wolves inches away from me. I now felt my lungs burning from the lack of breathing regularly but I push myself. I spot a tree I had years of practice climbing and leap six feet upward to get a decent start... I climb to the top of the coconut tree and rest a while on it's branches while contemplating how to make it out of this situation alive.

"Father what should I do now?", I ask looking up to the heavens. Thinking of my family, I dozed a little...

I woke up to see it was almost dawn and the wolves would go back into hiding in some dark places of the forest... I plucked a coconut and threw it down. The wolves got startled that something bigger and more dangerous might be approaching, so they scurried off, looking disappointed that they couldn't feast on me....

I thanked my Gods and my parents up in heaven for keeping a watch over me throughout the night.

I slowly slid down the tree after I was sure I was under no more threat. Limped my way back to the village knowing very well that nobody is going to believe the miracle I just experienced...

trekking forest, pond fishes

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