A fearless story – part 1

The forest beheld his view as he stood in front of the gnarled trees which marked the solitary entrance to the pit of the eerie jungle. The moon shone bright silver even at 6.30 in the evening, illuminating the violet coated sky with streaks of white, as bats noisily flapped over the gigantic trees which loomed over the entire canopy against the silent sky.  A faint North-Easterly wind drifted through the air, and the dry brown bushes rustled noisily in harmony with the draught, accompanied by the strange howling sounds which you would hear in a typical eerie forest setting at night.

Legend has it that the forest, Furchtloser Wald(Fearless Forest),  hid many secrets and creatures which one would normally associate with the fantasy stuff written for kids, a la Harry Potter. Many brave men have dared to enter it, but no one had come out of it alive yet. However, a Brit adventurer, Henry Summers, who had ventured into the forest 7 years ago, had sent a radio call “The foray into the forest is fraught with danger, but once you muster all obstacles, you come to a point where you become scared of nothing, knowing you have seen it all…….”. A second later, the sound of the radio hitting the ground was heard, and that was the last anyone heard from him.

Now, it was his turn to uncover the mystery behind Henry’s words. He looked behind his back at the crowd of onlookers, comprising of the locals and media persons, who had come to check on one of those crazy fellas hungry for some publicity. He gave a confident smile for the benefit of the cameras, while turning a deaf ear to the questions darted at him by the reporters. He had visited several parts of the world, and his achievements were widely known. However, this forest would truly be his crowning glory, and he was certain of it.

He silently stepped forward onto the muddy path, oblivious to the murmurs of the crowd and the maddening flashes of the camera behind him. With practiced breathing, he kept his mind fresh and alert; his left hand gripped a huge beam torch, directing a bright yellow beam ahead of him on the path. His other hand held a machete, to slice through the dense undergrowth and also serve as a handy weapon against unexpected adversaries. His ears straining for any odd sounds, his eyes directly following the field of vision ahead of him, his rubber boots cushioning the sound of his footfalls, he steadily made his way through the trees, hacking at a few stray branches obstructing his path.

He trudged through the mass of vegetation for some miles, without any incident. Spotting a fallen branch nearby, he walked up to it and sat on it, slinging his backpack by his side. His watch told him he had been walking for an hour and 13 minutes, and yet he felt he had only scratched the radius of the forest. He had no clue as to what lay in store for him, and the very thought of this sent a rush of adrenaline through his brain. By intuition, he fished out his Sig Sauer PG226 pistol, and slid in into his belt. Gulping a few sips of water, he got up and began his trip into the heart of the devil.

He soon lost track of time, and there was nothing dangerous except for some rodents hiding among the bushes, and strange birds squawking in shrill voices.  Soon he came to a secluded spot, where the ground was bare and bereft of grass or bushes. He looked up and perceived the silhouette of the trees swaying back and forth, the moonlight flashing through their leaves on the ground like a weak disco light.  A huge grey owl stared at him from atop a branch, its huge bulbous eyes scrutinizing the intruder in its lair. After a few seconds,  It ignored him and continued feasting on the small creature entrapped in its talons.


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