Wednesday, September 22, 2010

The Hunt

Salia worried about her husband. Since he was a boy, Carlos had participated in the hunt. She knew it was important to the village and their survival, but she also knew the dangers involved. Many times during her life, she would see the men return from the forest, some badly bruised and injured, and some mortally wounded, never to return home to their loved ones. Every hunt, she feared Carlos would be next, and she would become one of the village widows. She quietly wished there were another way, but in her heart she knew the importance of the hunt.

Carlos worried, too. Worried that he would make a mistake, and leave his beloved Salia behind. Worried that they would not get enough meat, skins, and fur to sustain the village through the brutal winter. This was his seventeenth hunt, and he knew it was likely that at least one of his tribe would not return. He knew that others would be maimed and would never be able to participate in the hunt again. But their job was vital to their survival, and without their efforts, everyone in the village would perish. As he moved through the trees, he spotted his quarry, deep in the underbrush. He steadied his spear, and realized that, no matter the danger, he lived for the hunt. It called to him each year, and he was drawn to it.

After all, it was marmot season.

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