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Gone Ch. 1
The smell of eggs and toast filled my nose as my eyes cracked open. I removed some gunk from my eyes and sat up. I unzipped my insulated sleeping bag and stepped out of my tent. A warm fire blazed twenty feet from my tent. There, sat my dad, a tall man around 6 and a half feet tall, with a scruffy beard hanging from his lips. He had dark gray eyes and short brown hair. My mom, an also tall woman rising above 5 foot eleven, had light blonde hair and big green eyes.
I slipped into my hiking shoes and headed over to the dark crimson fire. I sat on a hollow log not more than 2 feet from the fire. I rinsed a silver plate with some cold water and placed some eggs and toast in the center. I spread some strawberry jam onto the toast. I take a bite out of the warm combination.
“How did you sleep,” my mom asks me curiously.
“Fine, when did you guys wake up this morning,” I asked taking another bite out of the toast.
“Around 5,” my dad replied. “I went out and scavenged some dry fire wood,”
“You should have woken me up,” I say firmly. “We could have had some father son bonding time.”
“I wanted you to be rested,” he told me, glancing around. “You want to go hunting, right,”
I had completely forgotten. Every camping trip we went out and hunted the wild game of the forest. One time, a pack of wild turkeys scattered through the forest. I raised my bow, which is the only thing I can hunt with, and sent one plummeting to the ground. That same day I plucked and skinned it. I cut off all the fat and took out all the intestines. I put them in a leaf container that I had hand fashioned and placed it in an old pine by the camp cite. They were useful for extra coals in the fire.
“Be ready,” my dad said. “We leave at nine.” I check my watch to see that it is already 7:30. I had slept in a lot later than I had planned. I finish off the rest off my food. I briskly run to my tent, grab a towel and run down to the small creek only about a half mile from the camp cite. I strip my clothes off, setting them on a nearby tree. I hang my towel on a stray branch and head into the creek. I get all the dirt and muck off my body, as the cold water merrily sits there.
As I finish bathing, I dry off and put my clothes back on. I slip on my socks and hiking shoes, and then head back to camp. I’m still a little wet but it feels good now that the sun is getting hot.
I get back to our camp cite around 8:30 and gather up my hunting gear. I change in my hunting apparel and head to my parent’s tent. He walks out with a thin camouflage jacket with camouflage pants, a green hat and backpack with all the essentials. He also has a rifle attached to his belt. We exchange excited glances and head out. The sun is well over the horizon now, about a fourth of the way through the sky. Dad leads me up a trail that is so narrow that we can’t walk side by side. I string my bow just in case we are in for a surprise attack. My silver bow has a red dragon placed on the shaft. The string is thin but strong and I can place a bow in any animal’s heart. After about ten minutes of vigorous hiking, we spot a beautiful elk but it would be too big to carry without it rotting, so we let it be. We then set some feet traps and set a couple of pressure traps. We keep going, remembering the spots where we set the traps.
I get a rabbit and a squirrel, which might make a nice stew. After about an hour of hunting we stop a black bear and its cubs. The bears are beautiful with glistening black hair and brown stout noses. The mama is huge, standing over six feet on two legs. This is particularly unusual because she looks me straight in the eyes and does nothing, even with my bow strung. Something in her eyes tells me, “I will see you again.” It was weird. I have never connected with any animal like that. Let alone the black bears race.
I try to shake it out of my mind. We get another rabbit and surprisingly two wild turkeys. We will have a feast tonight. We head back to where we set our traps. We only get a squirrel but that will make the feast bigger. All together we got two rabbits, two squirrels and two wild turkeys.
When we get back to camp, Dad and I pluck and gut the turkeys. We also clean, gut and cut up the rabbits and squirrel. We roast all of it over a warm coal fire. We throw the guts of the animals into the fire. I start making a warm stew of squirrel, rabbit and boiling water.
Before dinner, I head down to the creek and get a bucket of water. I purify it and serve it with dinner. My dad and I said that we would make all of the dinner, food and drinks.
My mom compliments our food and says, “You must have worked very hard to create this meal,”
“We did,” I reply. “We hunted for 3 hours. Oh and…I made the stew.”
We all laugh, enjoying everything that we are doing. As dinner finishes, we head back to our tent and settle in for bed. Just before I get in my tent my mom told me something, something I wasn’t sure what it meant. Something surprising. What she spoke of was like a twist in a book. She said,
“I love you so much, remember that, okay?”
I responded with a simple, “Alright, I love you too,”
I zipped open my tent and glided into it. The words had such an effect on me, it was just like the bear. Weird. I jumped into my insulated sleeping bag. I took a big, wet gulp of water and turned off the light.
I sat waiting looking up into space. I couldn’t sleep now, I had to much on my mind. Little bits of moonlight danced through the tent. I tried to close my eyes, but I couldn’t. I finally decided to go to the bathroom in the woods.
This camping trip was getting weird. And it was about to get even weirder.