the woods are lovely, dark, and deep

POSTED: Sat Feb 01, 2014 3:04 am

He loved the forest - it was deep, and dark, and full of life and mystery. He remembered having walked the forest with his mother and his siblings, and he remembered that she would teach them things about the woods each day. It was great fun, and he remembered those memories fondly. They were gone, however. He had separated from his mother long ago, and with good reason; he didn't need his mother anymore to tell him what each creature was or why they made that sound or what creatures to hide from. It was the way of cats to be that way; he could stand for himself, and it was good that way. He didn’t need his mother anymore, and although he had loved her, it had not pained him greatly to leave her; he had to be independent on his own, and learn how to do things his own way.

The forest was lovely. It had lots of places for young cats to hide, and climb - the trees with the low-hanging branches did very, very nicely for him, and he loved to sit in those branches and watch the world go by. The birds especially. Their songs filled his sensitive ears with music, and sometimes he felt jealous that his yarling, low meow was not as delicate or beautiful as their chirps and warbles. Some of the birds even mocked him when he meowed at them; they repeated back his own meows at him before returning to their own whistling songs. He didn’t mind, however; they were just doing what they knew how to do, and he thought that it was a bit funny to have his own voice echoed back to him.

He snapped back to the present - he had zoned out a bit and had stopped walking forward, which he had been to go on an adventure. He shook himself awake from his daydreams, and forced himself to focus strongly on his surroundings. Now, he was standing on the forest floor, looking up at the trees and through the forest, to each individual tree beyond and throughout. The world was quiet there - perfectly still and silent, and even the birds at that moment were not enhancing the scene with their song. All the world was quiet, and so was Element. He felt happy, safe there - he felt good. He was alone… well, mostly.

”Element?” a crystal-clear and high-pitched voice rang out, its familiarity a true welcome. Element smiled and padded towards it; he always had loved her voice. It was light and feathery, beautiful, reminding him of the very birds that he was so envious of. Except he wasn’t jealous of Flower. He would never have any negative emotions towards the feline that he had companioned with so soon after leaving his mother - he only felt love towards her, although he was certain that she would not feel the same.

He walked to the clearing where she sat, and he smiled at her. She turned to look at him, and he merely stared for a moment, not caring that she was looking at him somewhat quizzically. Her mottled coat shone in the spotted sunlight, and the white patches reflected the sun dazzingly, allowing the red marks of fur to stand out even more against the black and the white. Her eyes were a brilliant yellow, like the wild cats’ eyes were, and they shone with an intelligence that Element knew belied her beautiful appearance. Flower was amazing, and he loved to travel with her.

”I’m here,” he said happily as he wound his way over to the feline calico. Flower rose to meet him; she rubbed her cheek against his, allowing her tail to wind through his and entwining them together. Such affections would be strange to a human, who would attach it to a relationship in their own terms and their own world. However, the lives of animals were different. They didn’t see the world as strangely as the humans did, and their actions had much simpler connotations to them. Their greeting was one of just friends, although one of them did harbor feelings for the other.

They greeted each other more and then began to set off. Where they were going, Element didn’t know, and that was what he liked about traveling with Flower. There was no deadline, there was no meeting date, there was no when or where or why or what. It was always just doing what they wanted to do, and going where they wanted to go; it was nothing too special, really, and that was what made it so precious to him, his time with her. He would follow her endlessly, and although they didn’t have many goals in mind, just her company was enough to satisfy him. Wherever she went, he was content to go as well.

She began to walk south, which was a place that he had never really ventured before. They had mostly stayed within the confines of the mountain where both of the had grown up, and to travel outside of it was certainly an adventure indeed. He followed her without question, allowing her gait to become his, and allowing his pace to match hers so that they were walking side by side, merely walking. It wasn’t a journey or a quest - it was just a simple walk, a jaunt, to wherever they wanted. Well, wherever she wanted; she usually was the one who had the ideas, and he was the one that followed her and went along with her plans in the first place.

They walked for a while, until the forest began to break down and the trees began to become scattered and sparse. The land became softer, somehow, as if the grass had chosen to become soft plush feather down; there were fewer nettles there, too, and he didn't feel his feet sting as much. Element grew curious. He had never really been in this area of the land before, and he cocked his head, wondering where they were going. He would go along anyway, go along endlessly, but he still was very curious as to what was beyond the forest, the forest that was steadily thinning.

”There’s a land beyond the mountain,” Flower said to him as they ambled along the terrain; it was growing soft and wispy-like grass was growing here, like a wide open moor. The trees were now far and few between, and Element could see the sky for miles. ”They say the great canines live there. I just want to see - just to see,” she said, and he could hear the excitement in her voice, so he pressed his side gently against her and continued on.

As they kept walking, the land kept changing, and Element continued to see strange changes that he'd never seen or scented before. Scents became extra-concentrated around certain areas, and they smelled of unusual creatures that Element didn't recognize. Flower called them the canines, and Element was slightly wary of them; he didn't know what they looked like or anything except for how they smelled, and judging from that, they smelled very rough and unusual to him. He hoped that they weren't aggressive, although he knew that that was a possibility. Still, he trusted Flower; he trusted her wherever she went, and if she wanted to see the strange canines, they would.

Soon, however, the sun began to sink. The night was beautiful as it began to grow and show itself off in front of both of the cats; the stars began to poke out, showing their heads, and the constellations slowly began to form in the sky, while planets made their slow celestial dance. Element didn't want to continue on foot in a strange land that he wasn't familiar with in the dark with strange creatures walking around. Flower agreed, and they both found a comfortable small nook between two trees in a place that didn't smell like it was claimed by the weird creatures. They sat down close to one another, curled up against each other as cats would do.

”Thank you for coming with me,” Flower said to him, smiling at him through the dark fog of the night. Element smiled back and pressed closer against her, his black fur on her speckled fur of so many different colors. They were different, he and her - he preferred the static rest of monotony sometimes, and he liked to be alone at times, too. His fur was the color that ate all the others, the one that night claimed when it came to take over from the day - the blackness, the no color. Her fur was an explosion of mottled reds and greys and brilliant white - and her eyes, bright yellow, lighting up her face like the sun lit up the sky in the middle of the day.

Flower rest her head on the soft moss beneath them, and Element did the same. She closed her eyes - he kept his open just a little bit longer, just to see her for one moment more, before he allowed his lids to close and let sleep take over.

from element's past 1524+ words

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