He wanted to make his father and mother proud. He left the village long before sunrise, with his favorite pony, the brown, with the white blanket on her back. The weather was strange, and she was skittish, so he walked with her, and led her with a rope. It was not only dark, but there was a thick fog. It was warm and cold, at the same time, and the air was wet. Both of them could hardly see. He knew the deer paths well though, so in a short time they were far from the village. He expected to get in trouble later for going hunting by himself, but after all, he was 14 years old now.
He heard a wolf howling in the distance, but thought nothing of it, he was probably calling to his mate. They walked further, into a valley he did not know. He took his bow off his back and decided to get ready in case he saw something. He was hoping for a large deer, or maybe even a woodlands buffalo. These buffalo traveled in much smaller herds than the ones on the plains.
There was that wolf howling again, off to his right, and closer now. Another howl came from his left, as if to answer. He could not see, but daylight was beginning, and he would feel much better, as soon as the sun was up. His pony stomped, and snorted. She was becoming more nervous by the moment. He stood there listening, as two more howls came, one from the left and one from the right. They were both closer. He crouched, trying not to show his pony that he too was nervous. He waited, crouching, and listening. An arrow slid into his bow.
The sun made its presence known, but now all they could see were shadows, in the thick fog. A twig snapped close to him, on the right. His pony panicked, pulled the rope out of his hand, and ran away in the direction they had come. Two more howls came from each side of him, and they were very close. He heard rustling in the bushes, and then on the right he heard the animal so close that he could hear it panting. Was that a shadow? He did not move but his bow was ready. He slowly, instinctively reached for his large hunting knife, to make sure it was still there.
He began to panic, and remembered something his Grandfather, Lone Horse had taught him. He sensed the earth. It was calm, and he became more relaxed.
To be continued in Part II
Writing © Copyright 2014, nicodemasplusthree