She hissed quietly as she stumbled over yet another rock. Damn ankle; it had caused her nothing but discomfort and trouble since she had been caught in the trap. Kairu rushed to Myoko’s side to help her to her feet. “I’m sorry for that.” He apologized for the twentieth time. She tilted her head at his strange words.
Though she couldn’t understand him, she was probably getting tired of hearing him apologize. He couldn’t help it though, he felt horrible that it was his trap that had injured her. He looked again at her ankle. The bandage had been stained in many areas by blood and in some places there was fresh blood showing. “Look, you’re bleeding again.” Her gaze followed where he pointed his finger. “Sit.” He told her, gesturing at a small boulder. She limped to where he pointed and sat down. He knelt down and removed the crude bandage to examine the wound. Blood oozed from the matted fur that surrounded a rather deep, but thin gash that went completely around her ankle. He searched through his sack, until he found a poultice from his travels. He dabbed a bit on to her wound and then made another tear in his shirt to create a clean bandage. “There you go.” He said, smiling gently, “All better.” He helped her to her feet. She smiled in return and purred her gratitude. He laughed slightly. “You’re welcome.” Suddenly, a strong wind blew. “We should probably set up camp soon, it’s getting dark.” He shivered as another gust whistled through the trees. “And cold.”
He began to rummage through his sack again; he did that a lot. She was beginning to wonder if there was anything it did not contain. He pulled out a couple of stakes and a patch-work tarp and within minutes, he had set up a tent against the face of a large boulder. Myoko carried back an armful of firewood and immediately began to start a fire for the shivering Kairu. “I’m afraid I have no more food, we’ll have to do some hunting in the morning.” He said, mostly to himself. He lay down on the mat he had set up in the tent, pulling the thin covers over his shoulders. “Poor fox.” She thought, “His coat isn’t used to this weather.” She strode lightly to where he lay and curled up beside him, allowing her warmth to spread to him. Slowly, his shivering died down. “T-thanks.” He whispered, blushing slightly.
She had begun to purr softly and the sound was absolutely beautiful. Kairu blinked sleepily as her warmth seeped into him. He was very grateful that she finally trusted him enough to be this close to him. The three days they had been traveling together, she had stayed far behind him, constantly on the alert. Now here she was, pressing her body closer still to his as another weak shiver passed through his body. He smiled to himself. “Good night.” He thought, then closed his eyes and drifted to sleep.
She smiled softly as he brushed his fingers through her hair. The moon was shining on her, causing her fur to glow silver; she looked so beautiful. He tentatively wove his fingers into hers. She smiled and kissed his cheek. Then she stood up and pulled him to his feet. She then took off running, giggling playfully. He gave chase, but the faster he ran, the farther away she seemed. The wind picked up speed, blowing up snow, until it swirled so thickly around him, that he was completely engulfed in white.
A wonderful smell drifted through the tent. Kairu slowly opened his eyes. “What is that smell?” he wondered aloud. “Is rabbit.” Myoko answered in her heavily accented voice. “Where did you-?” He stopped in mid sentence. “You understood me?” He rushed out of the tent and stared at her in shock. “I not sleep last night, so I read books in bag…I learn some of your tongue this way.” He continued to stare at her, mesmerized. Despite her accent, he couldn’t help but notice how beautiful her voice sounded. She held out a plate of wood with steaming rabbit heaped on top. “You want?” Breaking from his shock slightly, he looked down at the food. “It smells good.” She smiled. “I use wild herbs growing nearby.” He took a mouthful, it was amazing. He hurriedly finished the meal. “Thank you very much.” He said when he had finished. She opened her mouth to reply, but stopped suddenly. “We go.” She said. Kairu gazed at her, puzzled. “Now?” “Yes now!” she said, grabbing him roughly by the wrist, dragging him away. “Can I at least get my tent?” “Not time!” she snapped. “What the hell has you so eager to leave?” She ignored him and continued to drag him through the trees. “Myoko?” She stopped and turned to face him, her eyes full of fear. “Nualas.”