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The Hearts Of Hunters



 

 

Lauri’s thick beard streamed across his chest, red with thin stripes of silver. He looked larger than he truly was, wrapped in layers of colourful furs. Atop his head sat his crown. A mighty hat made of wolf’s gray coat with a snow hare's paw hanging down from it, dangling as he strode across the camp.

 

With a wide swipe of his arm he pushed the moose’s pelt to the side, stepping into his fur tent. A hint of rare excitement could be heard in his usually solemn voice when he spoke in the language of the Lossoth, “Come my children! I wish to tell a tale!” He stepped to stand by the bonfire crackling in the middle of their tall tent.

 

Hrannu, a boy of three winters seen, rolled to sit on his rear by the flames, his golden locks matching the fire's warmth in hue. Ainoa, a girl of six winters seen sat beside her brother, wide eyes locked keenly on their grandfather. Vaalea, the mother of the children, sat there already, carving symbols into bone. Her husband Torgrun sat by her side, sharpening his knife. They both laid down their chores to listen.   

 

Lauri pulled his wrinkled features into a wide smile, yet it was a brief one as he abruptly moved his hands to paint a wide arc in the air, wild eyes staring at the children through the flames and smoke, “Since the land was born….” He hunched, shrinking “....There has been a legend of a rare creature….” With soft fur boots he prowled silently behind his children in a circle, “....a mystic beast every hunter dreams to catch...” He grinned, “But none have yet...It is said, because this creature hides in the deepest of caves.... And even when it sneaks out of it's dark hole...” He halted behind Hrannu, to whisper behind his head, “...It is more cunning than any man...”  He sneaked a step forth, whispering behind Ainoa’s head, “...And faster than the swiftest hunter...”

 

The children turned their heads, staring wide-eyed at the middle-aged man. He grinned briefly at their expressions, before turning solemn again “...Still many hunters have sacrificed their lives, looking for this creature...Following the trails...…” He lowered his voice as if to share a secret, “...Of The gigantic fox….” Suddenly a rock was thrown into the embers, sending sparks up high toward the dark ceiling, “The Flame Tail! ...It's fur made of light itself!” The children gasped in awe.  

 

Lauri creeped backwards toward the doorway of their fur tent, “Now come my children….”, and as if pulled by invisible strings the young ones stumbled swiftly in their grandfather’s trail.

 

Lauri pushed the pelt that closed their tent to the side, “...Witness it’s trail!”

 

Large young eyes raised to stare up at the night sky. It was painted green by dancing lights, fleeing into the starry horizon. It was the most magical thing they had ever seen. And like in the hearts of many hunters before them, a spark was born.

 

 

(This is based on the old Northern Myth of The Fire Fox. It was told the green lights upon the Northern Sky were created when the fox's fur rubbed the trees or the ground. I changed it a bit to mold it better into the culture and religion I have created for my Lossoth characters.)