© 2001-2019 Detjen Haynes
Published on stormrise.com on October 7, 2001.
Part 1

A light gust of wind wove its way through the forest, carrying with it the chilly touch of winter. leaves stirred in the wind and their rustling mingled with the babble of a nearby river. On the bank of the river sat a young cub, leaning out to look into the water. His brown eyes, sparkling with curiosity, moved quickly, as he quickly scanned from one rock to another, looking for anything of interest.

He caught a quick burst of movement from the corner of his eyes, and he slid over a little looking down at the new section of water. Unable to find whatever it was he sat up, brushing some hair out of his eyes. The cub stood up looking for something new when he received a send.

**Wandering Leaf, It's time to eat.**

With his stomach growling at the thought he started running for home. His

Home was in a nearby holt that rested in a clearing near the river. Along the

northside of the clearing rested the trees that held the den. Normally the dens were full of elves moving from one den to another or working at the base of their trees in everyday work. The clearing would be used as a place to play for the cubs. Wolves and elves would run around wrestling, chasing each other, or racing. Sometimes they would find something to play with, such as a ball of fur which they could kick around.

Over the last few months a horrible disease hit the holt. It started

affecting the wolves first. The holt had no healer just a herbalist. She was unable to stop the disease and soon only one wolf had survived. Shortly afterwards the Chieftain fell victim to the disease, and it spread.

Now out of the once rather large holt only five elves remained, but there

had also been talk by the others about leaving. Racing through the clearing

Wandering Leaf reached the tree with their den in it. Their den rested just off the ground, with a small rock used as a step to get in. Outside it would be hard to find the den as the entrance was carefully camouflaged, normally the dens tended to rest higher up in the trees where they wouldn't have to hide the entrance, but his mother had for some reason wanted to live closer to the ground. Inside the den was a cozy little place. At the rear was several furs

which was the bed. On one side rested small shelves formed out of the tree. Another side held a table and a couple of small chairs to sit in. At the table rested a rabbit, recently caught. His mother sat in one of the chairs with a knife, carving up the rabbit. She was dressed in a green dress that ran down to the floor, bulging a little in the

middle where the round belly betrayed itself. She smiled to Wandering Leaf as he came in.

"There you are, I hope you're hungry." he nodded vigorously as he sat down and

started eating the meat placed in front of him. She sighed slightly as she too started eating.

"Silverberry, died today." she announced sadly. Silverberry had been Wandering Leaf's last playmate before the cub finally fell sick.

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