Her stomach tightened, woefully neglected.
Her limp arm still looked infected.
The winter wind had ushered her south,
Away from the canyon's whispering mouth.
Her lungs cursed the pinching frost.
Rejecting the cold in an overdue cough.
She lumbered on as her chest heaved.
A runny nose wiped on a well worn sleeve.
The rain from last night felt just shy of evil.
Still wet underneath the blanket of fallen needles.
As expected, the girl slipped,
Down the side where old leaves tend to drift.
She found herself laid out in a deep puddle.
Her face caked with mud, like an old dog’s muzzle.
The wet clothes found skin.
An unforgiving cold quickly pressing in.
Her courage collapsed in sudden panic,
As she fumbled up a small cliff of granite.
Night came and she shivered frantically.
A warm bed floated in her mind hopelessly.
She awoke on the back of a stilted Wanderer.
Not fully aware of what was in front of her.
Curiously wrapped in furs from shoulder to leg.
She rubbed aching eyes, bloodshot red.
The last two days were more than a body could handle.
Her adventurous spirit had left her collapsed in the brambles.
Where has this creature delivered me she thought?
She struggled to stand, but her muscles were in knots.
The thing ushered her up it’s neck like a ramp.
Despite her many protests of “Please, no, I can’t!”
The girl stood atop of one of it’s odd heads.
Though she questioned if it was something else instead.
Her poor vision saw a pale glow in the night.
A sudden warmth that eased the cold air's bite.
“My village, my home!”
The possibility lifted her spirits alone.
As the stilted Wanderer carried her closer,
She realized her search for home was far from over.
Just ahead stood a tree of massive size,
With an unnatural inferno flickering inside.